Natural Resources and Pro-Poor Growth

The Economics and Politics

image of Natural Resources and Pro-Poor Growth

This publication demonstrates that natural resources can contribute to growth, employment, exports and fiscal revenues in low-income countries, where natural capital constitutes a quarter of total wealth. It highlights the importance of policies encouraging the sustainable management of these resources. Moreover, it emphasises the need to address the political challenges of natural-resource management for long-term pro-poor economic growth. Part I provides an overview of the economics and politics of natural resources. It describes the unique features of natural resources and resulting management challenges, the role of sustainable natural resource management in supporting pro-poor growth, and the politics and governance of natural resources. It then offers recommendations for policy makers on how to support the approaches advocated in the paper. Part II examines these issues with respect to seven specific natural-resource sectors: fisheries, forests, wildlife and ecotourism, soil productivity, water security, minerals and renewable energy.

English Also available in: French

Forestry for Pro-Poor Growth

The forest industry is a major source of growth and employment. In many countries the sector contributes more than 10% to GDP and provides formal and informal employment in developing countries for an estimated 40 to 60 million people. Many developing countries also rely on timber for export earnings. Over 90% of people living in extreme poverty depend on forests for some part of their livelihoods (World Bank, 2004a). But global forest cover has been reduced by at least 20% since pre-agricultural times. While forest area has increased slightly since 1980 in industrial countries, it has declined by almost 10% in developing countries (WRI, 2000).

English Also available in: French

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