By John Ravenhill (eds.)
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Extra resources for Africa in Economic Crisis
As Little, Scitovsky and Scott noted: 'Other things being equal, it is easier to increase exports of a particular commodity if one has a small share in the world market for it than if one has a large one. '40 While some African 18 Africa in Economic Crisis countries will succeed in increasing their agricultural exports in the future this will probably occur, as in the 1970s, at the expense of others, as in the Ivory Coast supplanting Nigeria and Ghana in European cocoa imports. Does Africa have a comparative advantage in the production of its traditional cash crops as the World Bank suggests?
The Elusiveness of Development 37 II. World Bank, Toward Sustained Development p. 4. 12. See also Kenneth Shapiro, 'The Limits of Policy Reform in African Agricultural Development: A Comment on the World Bank's "Accelerated Development in Sub-Saharan Africa" (mimeo). 13. Here again, Toward Sustained Development illustrates the need for extreme caution in interpreting aggregate figures. 4 per cent for the 1960-70 period. 14. Carl K. Eicher, 'West Africa's Agrarian Crisis', (West African Association of Agricultural Economists, 1984).
Much of the recent poor performance is closely related to the decline in agricultural export earnings which has reduced import capacity, causing severe shortages of spare parts in many industries, and eroded domestic purchasing power. Declining domestic agricultural production has also, in some countries, led to shortages of raw material inputs for processing industries. Even the drought has had unanticipated consequences for the industrial sector, for example, the low level of water in the Volta Dam is reported to have reduced electricity production to such an extent that the Alcan smelter in Ghana was severely damaged.
Africa in Economic Crisis by John Ravenhill (eds.)