Informations et ressources scientifiques
sur le développement des zones arides et semi-arides

Accueil du site → Doctorat → États-Unis → 1979 → AGRICULTURAL COMPARATIVE ADVANTAGE UNDER UNCERTAINTY : THE CASE OF SENEGAL.

Purdue University (1979)

AGRICULTURAL COMPARATIVE ADVANTAGE UNDER UNCERTAINTY : THE CASE OF SENEGAL.

Jabara, Cathy Lynn

Titre : AGRICULTURAL COMPARATIVE ADVANTAGE UNDER UNCERTAINTY : THE CASE OF SENEGAL.

Auteur : Jabara, Cathy Lynn

Université de soutenance : Purdue University

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) 1979

Résumé
The traditional theory of comparative advantage demonstrates that if every country specialized in the production and export of commodities in which it is the relatively least cost producer in exchange for commodities in which it is a relatively high cost producer, both global welfare and the welfare of each trading country would be maximized. However, these implications are derived under assumptions of perfect certainty. Agricultural trade is characterized by two forms of uncertainty. First, climatic inputs in agricultural production are stochastic and not under the farmer’s control. Second, future international prices are uncertain, known at best in a probability sense. Due to uncertainty in international markets for agricultural commodities, many countries, especially LDC’s, have become reluctant to follow a comparative advantage trade strategy. Because prices cf imported food grains are uncertain, many LDC’s are promoting programs to achieve self-sufficiency in food grains. These counfries c.re also advocating international commodity programs to stabilize prices of agricultural commodities. Thus, it appears that uncertainty in international markets is an important criterion in formulating trade policy in practice. The objective of this research was to analyze agricultural comparative advantage for a small country under conditions of uncertainty in international trade. Senegal, a small, open economy was chosen for the case study. Traditionally, Senegal has exported peanut products and imported cereals. Most observers have argued that this policy is consistent wLth Senegal’s comparative advantage. In recent years, however, a program of substituting domestically produced for imported cereals has been promoted in Senegal. To analyze agricultural comparative advantage for Senegal, a regional, Duloy-Norton type linear programming model of the agricultural sector of Senegal was developed. The model includes activities for agricultural production, trade, processing, marketing, consumption, and interregional transport. Under the assumption of risk aversion for participants in the agricultural sector, risk activities for international prices and domestic production of traded crops were included. Risk was incorporated in the model through an (E,a) formulation of utility for international trade activities. For the comparative advantage analysis, base year prices in the model were adjusted, via shadow prices, to correct for price distortions in the Senegalese economy. The results of the empirical analysis indicated that : 1) Under certainty conditions, Senegal has a comparative advantage in peanut production and a comparative disadvantage in cereals production ;2) With uncertainty in international prices and in domestic export production, production of cereals increases at the expense of peanuts ; 3) With risk in domestic production of import substitutes as well as the above-mentioned sources of uncertainty, the pattern of comparative advantage is not clear. Comparative advantage depends upon the relative weights associated with the various sources of uncertainty. Results of the empirical analysis indicate that, depending upon the degree of uncertainty and the source of uncertainty, a snail country may be better off at a more diversified position than would be prescribed by conventional trade theory. This suggests that domestic import substitution programs which distort internal prices to reflect risk may be optimal from an economic point of view.

Présentation

Version intégrale (8,06 Mb)

Page publiée le 9 février 2020