Jallow, Amadou (2021) Essays on immigrant integration, remittances, and agricultural policies in developing countries. [Tesi di dottorato]


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Item Type: Tesi di dottorato
Lingua: English
Title: Essays on immigrant integration, remittances, and agricultural policies in developing countries
Jallow, Amadoujjallowamadou@gmail.com
Date: 3 July 2021
Number of Pages: 168
Institution: Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II
Department: Economia, Management e Istituzioni
Dottorato: Economia
Ciclo di dottorato: 33
Coordinatore del Corso di dottorato:
Pagano, Marcomarco.pagano@unina.it
Zazzaro, AlbertoUNSPECIFIED
Date: 3 July 2021
Number of Pages: 168
Uncontrolled Keywords: Migration, Integration, Remittances, Disasters, Agricultural policies, export bans
Settori scientifico-disciplinari del MIUR: Area 13 - Scienze economiche e statistiche > SECS-P/06 - Economia applicata
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2021 17:02
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2023 11:04
URI: http://www.fedoa.unina.it/id/eprint/13757


This thesis is organised into two main parts; the first part relates to immigrants - their economic integration in the host country and their role in mitigating the effects of disasters in their home countries through remittances. The second part of this thesis is a policy evaluation of the effect of export bans on prices and food security. In the first chapter, I describe and investigate the role of informal institutions in the labour market integration of immigrants. I exploit a law in France, that was implemented in 1981 when the socialist government came to power, which allowed individuals including immigrants to organise themselves into groups or associations. North African immigrants mainly originating from Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria capitalised on this law to establish several community based organisations in various locations in France. A particular type that is of interest to this paper are those engaged in the economic integration of immigrants. These organisations mainly seek to assist immigrants in improving their labour market outcomes through the provision of language training classes, CV preparations, information about job opportunities and so on. I collect information on all such organisations registered in France between 1996 - the year in which the first organisation was recorded to 2012. I combine it with data from the French labour force survey between 1990 and 2012 to asses its effect on labour force participation, employment, and earnings of these immigrants using a difference-in-differences strategy combined with a Heckman selection model. I find that these organisations improve labour force participation rates and the probability of obtaining a job for Maghreb women without a corresponding reduction in earnings. %The impact of these organisations is driven by the larger impact on women, people who had stayed long in the destination country levels of education and immigrants arriving newly. In the second chapter, using monthly remittance flows from Italy to a number of developing countries, we investigate the impact of natural disasters on remittances with the aim of improving identification by adapting an event study design. This allows us to flexibly document the immediate response of remittances and to test if there exists any anticipatory or lag effect in the way in which remittances responds to natural disasters. The use of monthly data further allows us to clearly distinguish the response of remittances depending on the nature of the disaster. Our analyses uses various alternative specifications of the disaster measure and varying lengths of the response period. Our findings reveal that remittances increases significantly in the months following the occurrence of a disaster peaking at an average of 2.7 percent, four months following the disaster and averaging about 2 percent over the 12 months window. Controlling for disasters occurring outside our sample period to eliminate any remaining trend in remittance flows and capture any potential dynamics that might be attributed to disasters does not affect neither the magnitude or significance of our coefficients, rather it allows for a clear breakthrough in the dynamics of remittance flows around the time of the disaster. All our findings are robust to controlling for other shocks in the receiving country such as the trend and cyclical fluctuation in the monthly terms of trade, monthly rainfall and temperature as well as a proxy for the economic condition in the sending country and a host of country and time fixed effects. Further carrying out several heterogeneity analyses reveal that the response of remittances is higher for countries with a relatively larger stock of immigrants and that the observed effect is largely driven by the response to disasters occurring in upper middle-income developing countries. We also find a differential response in timing based on the nature of the disaster, slow or sudden. %, for instance, restricting our analyses to only countries with a relatively larger stock of immigrants, we find that the response of remittances is much higher for these countries. When we dis-aggregate in terms of countries level of development, we find that the observed effect is largely driven by the response to disasters occurring in upper middle-income developing countries. We also find a differential response in timing based on the nature of the disaster. Finally, in the third chapter I conduct a policy evaluation of the effect of an export ban on maize instituted by the Malawian government. Using monthly price and annual harvest data from the Malawian ministry of agriculture, I investigate the effect of the policy on maize prices and its volatility as well as on maize production. I extend this literature by further distinguishing the export bans based on whether they are internally induced - supply shock or externally induced demand shock. To account for the endogeneity of the ban, I Use monthly rainfall data and global maize prices as instruments for the ban. I find the export bans on aggregate to be unsuccessful in preventing a rise in maize prices, though to some extent it stabilises maize prices. Once we distinguish the ban based on factors inducing it, we find two opposing results. First, that export bans are ineffective against a demand induced export ban but very effective against a supply induced export ban. Based on anecdotal evidence, it seems that traders hoard these goods in anticipation of a lifting of the ban to get access to better prices for their products, hence the ineffectiveness f the ban in the midst of rising global prices. Furthermore, there is also evidence that despite the ban, positive quantities of maize continues to be exported illegally rendering the policies ineffective and thereby failing to mitigate the effect of the shock on prices. In terms of food security, we use the share of acreage dedicated to maize production as a proxy for food security. Here, I argue that the ad-hoc nature in which the policy is imposed and lifted creates a source of uncertainty in maize prices which may have consequent effect on farmers maize cultivation decisions, especially for large scale commercial farmers. Estimating a dynamic system GMM model, I find that the ban induces farmers to reduce the acreage share allocated to maize production. However, since we do not observe the variety of maize being cultivated or the inputs used in production, we cannot really conclude on whether there is a decline in maize production or a shift towards cultivating higher yielding maize varieties.


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