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Agriculture, Roads, and Economic Development in Uganda

Agriculture, Roads, and Economic Development in Uganda

(p.69) 2 Agriculture, Roads, and Economic Development in Uganda
African Successes, Volume IV
Douglas GollinRichard Rogerson
University of Chicago Press

A large fraction of Uganda’s population continues to earn a living from quasi-subsistence agriculture. This paper uses a static general equilibrium model to explore the relationships between high transportation costs, low productivity, and the size of the quasi-subsistence sector. We consider how the economy would respond to improvements in agricultural productivity, increases in non-agricultural productivity, and we study the impact of a reduction in transportation costs. We also examine the effect of population growth on a fixed land base. We parameterize the model to replicate some key features of the Ugandan data, and we then perform a series of quantitative experiments. Our results suggest that the population in quasi-subsistence agriculture is highly sensitive both to agricultural productivity levels and to transportation costs. The model also suggests positive complementarities between improvements in agricultural productivity and transportation.

Keywords:   agriculture, productivity, transportation

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