Title: Institutions, economic growth and natural resources in Sub-Saharan African countries

Authors: Dorothé Yong Ngondjeb; Jean Hugues Nlom

Addresses: United Nations University-Institute for Natural Resources in Africa, 2nd Floor, International House, Annie Jiagge Road, University of Ghana, Campus Legon-Accra, Ghana; Centre de recherche en économie et gestion, Faculté des sciences économiques et de Gestion, University of Yaoundé II, P.O. Box 1365, Yaoundé, Cameroon ' Faculty of Economics and Management, University of Maroua, P.O. Box 46 Maroua, Cameroon

Abstract: The present study explores a sub-mechanism by which growth is implicitly slowed down: efficiency of institutions due to the illicit outflow of capital. This paper uses previously defined models of rent-seeking behaviour in resource-abundant economies to explain the observed effects. The empirical analysis explores direct linkages between institutions, economic growth and natural resource rents in a panel dataset of 32 Sub-Saharan African countries between 1980 and 2010. The study tests the hypothesis that countries more dependent on natural resources exhibit higher levels of illicit capital outflows. The result indicates that an increase in natural resource rents by one percentage point increases the capital flight-to-GDP ratio by approximately 12.9%. This relationship still holds even when control variables are introduced. These results can be attributed both to the effect of natural resource endowments on the political and economic climate, and to the aforementioned mechanism through which resources slow growth over time.

Keywords: institutions; capital flight; natural resource rents; economic growth; Sub-Saharan Africa.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSD.2017.089996

International Journal of Sustainable Development, 2017 Vol.20 No.3/4, pp.269 - 284

Accepted: 05 Oct 2017
Published online: 09 Feb 2018 *

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