Foreign Aid and Economic Growth in Developing Countries : Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa.
[Dissertation (University of Nottingham only)]
This study aims at understanding the impact of foreign aid on the economic growth of the Sub Saharan African region. Despite being the largest foreign aid recipient in the world, the region is the poorest with the lowest Human Development Index (HDI) and Gross National Income (GNI) per capita. This raises serious questions about the effectiveness of foreign aid to the economic growth and development of the region. As such, we examine the relationship between foreign aid, determined by the official development assistance (ODA), and the economic growth rate of the Sub Saharan Africa’s ten largest recipients of foreign aid, for a 23-year period from 1990 to 2012. These ten countries include Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire, Mozambique, Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda and Malawi. Based on the work of Burnside and Dollar (2000), Collier and Dollar (2002) and others, we include a wide range of factors in our model such as economic policies and institutional factors which are considered to be crucial for aid effectiveness. We find that aid by itself does not have significant impact on economic growth. However, the variable aid interacted with the policy index was found to be statistically significant and positive, which means that aid tends to increase growth rate in a good policy environment. Subsequently, when we include the institutional quality index and its interaction term in the model, we find that institutional quality has a positive and significant impact on growth; however, none of the aid variables were significant. We also test the two-gap growth model, developed by Chenery and Strout (1966) which states that foreign aid enhances economic growth through investment and imports. The results show that foreign aid is a good ingredient for supplementing investment and imports requirements in these ten countries. We believe that given foreign aid is conditional on the economic, political and institutional environment of the recipient country, this can explain why aid effectiveness is insignificant in the Sub Saharan Africa region where bad governance is a core issue on the region. Therefore, respective governments, donor agencies, and policy makers should take into consideration these multiple aspects when undertaking aid-financing activities.
Actions (Archive Staff Only)