OECD Development Centre Working Papers

The OECD Development Centre links OECD members with developing and emerging economies and fosters debate and discussion to seek creative policy solutions to emerging global issues and development challenges. This series of working papers is intended to disseminate the OECD Development Centre’s research findings rapidly among specialists in the field concerned. These papers are generally available in the original English or French, with a summary in the other language.

English, French

The Role of Capital Accumulation, Adjustment and Structural Change for Economic Take-Off

Empirical Evidence from African Growth Episodes

In this study, we analyse extended periods of growth in Africa based on panel estimations from 27 African countries during the 1960-1996 period. Only a dozen of such rapid growth episodes are observable in Africa since 1960, and several of them eventually came to an end. We use all existing information on macroeconomic performance in Africa in a comparative manner, in order to assess the sustainability of current growth episodes. Our main conclusion is that sustainable growth needs to be based on a balanced mix of capital accumulation, macroeconomic adjustment and structural change. In addition to more commonly used determinants of Total Factor Productivity, we construct a measure for the effect of labour reallocation as well as an index of economic diversification and estimate the impact of the latter on long-term growth. We also build an analysis of investment behaviour, which is influenced by Total Factor Productivity gains, while influencing economic growth directly through ...


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