Country Economic Memorandum

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    Lake Chad Regional Economic Memorandum: Technical Paper 3. Estimating the Spillover Economic Effects of Foreign Conflict - Evidence from Boko Haram
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-11-12) Jedwab, Remi ; Blankespoor, Brian ; Masaki, Takaaki ; Rodríguez-Castelán, Carlos
    Violent conflicts present a formidable threat to regional economies. Throughout the world, border regions in many countries are possibly impacted by the cross-border economic effects of regional insurgencies in neighboring countries or national state failures, i.e. "bad neighbors". This raises two questions. First, what is the magnitude of the spill-over economic effects of foreign conflict and what are the channels through which they operate Second, what policies can governments adopt in the potentially exposed regions to mitigate such spill-over effects. In this paper, we adopt a difference-in-difference (DiD) framework leveraging the unexpected rise of the Boko Haram insurgency in Northeastern Nigeria in 2009 to study its economic effects in neighboring areas in Cameroon, Chad and Niger that were not directly targeted by Boko Haram activities. We find strong cross-border economic effects that are likely driven by reduced trade activities, not the diffusion of conflict. Factors of local economic resilience to this foreign conflict shock then include trade diversification and political and economic securitization. More generally, conflicts, if they have regional economic effects, may necessitate regional responses.
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    Lake Chad Regional Economic Memorandum: Technical Paper 6. Building Rural Development in the Lake Chad Region
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-11-09) Blankespoor, Brian
    This paper examines the relationship between access to markets and land cultivation following Berg et al. (2018) using panel methods. Then, author contextualize these results within the broader recent development challenges of the Lake Chad region. The results provide evidence that an increase in market access is associated with an increase in cultivated land and is positively associated with an increase in local agricultural GDP. Even so, conflict from the rise of Boko Haram in the past decade can attenuate gains whereby the proximity to conflict events in the previous year is associated with less cropland across the entire region and less night time lights from over a hundred local markets nearby Lake Chad. This paper makes two contributions. First, the importance of market access as part of economic development is well known, yet advancements in measurement of agricultural activity derived from satellite data and recent data are necessary to gain current insight given developments in the region. Second, this paper contextualizes the findings of market access with local conditions given the numerous conflict events in the past decade from Boko Haram. The rest of this paper is structured as follows. Section two describes the data sources while section three presents the empirical framework, section four presents the results, and section five concludes.