Abreha, Kaleb

Office of the Chief Economist for Africa Region
Profile Picture
Author Name Variants
Fields of Specialization
International economics, Industrial organization, Development economics
External Links
Office of the Chief Economist for Africa Region
Externally Hosted Work
Contact Information
Last updated January 31, 2023
Kaleb Girma Abreha is an economist in the Office of the Chief Economist for the Africa Region at the World Bank. He was also a World Bank Africa fellow. Before joining the World Bank, he was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Economics and Business Economics and Department of Management, Aarhus University (Denmark). In addition to research, he lectured and assisted several undergraduate and graduate courses in economics, international business, and strategic management at universities in Denmark and Ethiopia. He has a PhD in economics from Aarhus University (Denmark), an MSc in agricultural economics from the University of Copenhagen (Denmark), and a BA in economics from Addis Ababa University (Ethiopia). Kaleb’s research focuses on industrialization, international trade and investment, global value chains, productivity, exchange rates, and CEOs and firm performance. His research has been published in peer-reviewed journals such as the World Bank Economic Review and the World Economy.
Citations 11 Scopus

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 1 of 1
  • Thumbnail Image
    Deconstructing the Missing Middle: Informality and Growth of Firms in Sub-Saharan Africa
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022-11) Abreha, Kaleb Girma ; Cirera, Xavier ; Fattal Jaef, Roberto N. ; Maemir, Hibret Belete ; Davies, Elwyn ; Maemir, Hibret Belete
    This paper characterizes the firm size distribution by exploiting establishment-level censuses covering both formal and informal firms in Sub-Saharan Africa. The paper finds a "missing middle" in the employment-based size distribution of firms in four Sub-Saharan African countries. This "missing middle" hinges on the inclusion of informal firms, and it is not explained by state- or foreign-owned firms at the top of the size distribution, nor does it emerge from the size distribution of entrants. The paper reconciles these empirical results with a model of firm dynamics with endogenous informality and shows that calibrated values of entry barriers and productivity-dependent idiosyncratic distortions generate a "missing middle" that is consistent with its underlying drivers in the data.