Technical workshop

3-day training workshop including short lectures and practical computer based training

01 July 2020
inequality
Blog
Channing Arndt and Sherman Robinson

In trying to limit the spread of COVID-19, policymakers globally have the difficult task of balancing the positive health effects of lockdowns against their economic costs, particularly the burdens lockdowns impose on low-income and food-insecure households.

24 June 2020
climate
Technical note
SA-TIED Technical Note 1: Modelling the effects of COVID-19 on the South African economy - a technical guide to the scenario builder
Rob Davies and Dirk van Seventer

There is a demand for quick studies evaluating the economic impact of the lockdowns used by many governments to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. Multiplier analysis is an appropriate method for examining the impacts of the lockdowns, particularly in the short run when both prices and technology are relatively fixed.

14 May 2020
macroeconomics
News

Young people are at the forefront of efforts to bring about change in society. They are passionate about and committed to actions which will improve their livelihoods and those of future generations in Africa.

For any action to be effective and sustainable it must be backed by evidence-based research and effective policies.

16 June 2020
Working paper
Richard Adu-Gyamfi, Simplice A. Asongu, Tinaye Sonto Mmusi, Herbert Wamalwa, and Madei Mangori

The objective of this research is to assess the extent to which export processing zones in Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe integrate the Sustainable Development Goals in their implementation and operations. We focused on four Sustainable Development Goals—gender equality, decent work, industry, and climate action.

01 June 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Joan Halstein
This paper explores how Southern Africa can leverage its mineral resources to support growth and industrialization. It considers the aggregate and spatial effects of transport infrastructure improvements, and the relative benefits of financing these investments through resource sector concessions versus government expenditure.
01 June 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Andrew Kerr

The IRP5 and IT3(a) tax data from the South African Revenue Service have been made available to researchers through a joint project between the South African Revenue Service, the National Treasury, and UNU-WIDER.

01 June 2020
inequality
Working paper
Cornelius Dube, Wellington Matsika, and Gamuchirai Chiwunze

Special economic zones (SEZs) in Africa are generally regarded as underperforming relative to their peers in the rest of the world. This study focuses on the design features of the SEZ in Africa that may help explain this underperformance.

01 June 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Mustapha Douch
The principal contribution of this paper is to investigate the relationship between policy uncertainty, caused by recent developments in international markets, and firms’ trade margins for the largest economy in Africa: South Africa.
01 June 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Jacomien Van Der Merwe and Stephan Krygsman

The purpose of this research is to investigate whether transport accessibility influences the employment duration of individuals in South Africa.

01 June 2020
inequality
Working paper
Ihsaan Bassier and Ingrid Woolard

Despite South Africa’s need for inclusive economic growth, we find that the income trajectories of the rich continue to diverge from the rest of the income distribution.

01 June 2020
inequality
Research Brief
by Alfred Moyo

Analysis of World Bank data ranging from 1990–2017 indicates that increases in global oil prices would have negative effects on the economic growth of Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, and especially Mauritius. Given the high reliance of Southern African countries on crude oil imports, barrel price increases in the global market can significantly...

20 May 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Impact of Covid-19 on the South African economy - An initial analysis
Channing Arndt, Rob Davies, Sherwin Gabriel, Laurence Harris, Konstantin Makrelov, Boipuso Modise, Sherman Robinson, Witness Simbanegavi, Dirk van Seventer, and Lillian Anderson

This paper reports ‘first pass’ estimates of the costs of the lock-down implemented by the South African government beginning on 27 March 2020. It also presents a series of recovery scenarios. Four channels by which a lockdown and other efforts are expected to influence economic activity are distinguished. In total, these lockdown measures have...

30 April 2020
macroeconomics
climate
Working paper
Deciphering the biodiversity-production mutualism in the global food security debate
Ralf Seppelt, Channing Arndt, Michael Beckmann, Emily A. Martin, and Tom Hertel

Without large changes in consumption as well as sharp reductions of food waste and post-harvest losses, agricultural production must grow to meet future food demands. The variety of concepts and policies relating to yield increases fail to integrate an important constituent of production and human nutrition – namely biodiversity. We here...

30 April 2020
climate
Working paper
The impact of the Employment Equity Act on female inter-industry labour mobility and the gender wage gap in South Africa
Mattie Susan Landman and Neave O’Clery

The Employment Equity Act No. 55 of 1998 was introduced by the South African government to address the legacy of apartheid and ensure equitable representation of black people and women in the South African labour market. Although the impacts of the Act are highly controversial, its widespread adoption among firms opens up questions on its...

29 April 2020
inequality
Working paper
Marlies Piek, Dieter von Fintel, and Johann Kirsten

This paper presents new evidence on the employment effects of a large increase in agricultural minimum wages in South Africa using anonymized tax data. We add to the minimum wage literature by differentiating employment effects resulting from the destruction of existing jobs and from the slower creation of new jobs. Using data from tax years...

29 April 2020
inequality
Working paper
Depreciation allowances in South Africa
Estian Calitz, Eva Muwanga-Zake, Alexius Sithole, and Wynnona Steyn

Nowadays, tax depreciation allowances are used less as instruments of macroeconomic stabilization and more as long-term measures to stimulate investment. This paper tabulates the types of accelerated depreciation allowances in South Africa and calculates the magnitude of these benefits in addition to standard across-the-board accounting...

29 April 2020
public_revenue
Working paper
Estimating the distribution of household wealth in South Africa
Aroop Chatterjee, Léo Czajka, and Amory Gethin

This paper estimates the distribution of personal wealth in South Africa by combining tax microdata, household surveys, and macroeconomic balance sheet statistics. We systematically compare estimates of the wealth distribution obtained by direct measurement of net worth, rescaling of reported wealth to balance sheet totals, and capitalization...

29 April 2020
inequality
Blog
Meet the women behind the Southern Africa – Towards Inclusive Economic Development programme
by Anne Tomi

Globally, women are under-represented in the field of economics. Only a third of all academic research staff in the field of economics in Europe are women. In the US the share is even lower.

12 March 2020
News
Effect of COVID-19 on SA-TIED: some disruptions but work continues
by SA-TIED

The Southern Africa – Towards Inclusive Economic Development (SA-TIED) programme will continue delivering on our mandates during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Some areas of programme operations however will be subject to temporary disruption during the pandemic – updates will be provided on our website and social media....

25 March 2020
Working paper
Product market competition and the labour market - Evidence from South Africa
Francesco Amodio, Michele Di Maio, Yifan Li, and Patrizio Piraino

We study the relationship between product market competition and labour market outcomes in South Africa. We combine firm-level data from tax records with individual-level data from the labour force survey. We estimate markups across sectors, and derive a measure of employment concentration in high-markup sectors across South African district...

30 March 2020
inequality
Working paper
Making agricultural value chains more inclusive through technology and innovation
Reena das Nair and Namhla Landani

Some entry barriers in agricultural and agro-processing value chains, particularly for smallholder farmers and small/medium-sized processors, can be overcome with innovation and technology adoption. Technologies and innovation in these sectors have been both radical and incremental, ranging widely through biotechnology; production technologies...

30 March 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Agro-processing, value chains, and regional integration in Southern Africa
Anthony Black, Lawrence Edwards, Ruth Gorven, and Willard Mapulanga

Regional integration in Africa is underway but ongoing progress requires that the gains are widely spread. South Africa’s huge regional trade surplus in manufactured goods is already leading to protectionist pressures in neighbouring countries. Agro-processing is a large sector, which is widely regarded as having significant potential, but the...

30 March 2020
regional_growth
Working paper
Modelling the costs of constraining the transition to renewable energy in South Africa
Bruno Merven, Faaiqa Hartley, Sherman Robinson and Channing Arndt

For decades cheaper and easily available fossil fuels have underpinned the energy system of South Africa and inhibited the potential for achieving a sustainable low carbon economy. Favourable developments in renewable energy technologies and falling prices provide an opportunity for the country to reduce its emissions significantly without...

25 March 2020
climate
Working paper
The changing nature of hydroclimatic risks across Southern Africa
C. Adam Schlosser, Andrei Sokolov, Ken Strzepek, Tim Thomas, Xiang Gao, and Channing Arndt

This study presents results from a large ensemble of projected changes in seasonal precipitation and near-surface air temperature changes for the nation of South Africa. The ensemble is based on a combination of pattern-change responses derived from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP-5) climate models along with the...

25 March 2020
climate
Working paper
Measuring labour earnings inequality in post-apartheid South Africa
Serena Merrino

This paper investigates the validity of household survey data published by Statistics South Africa since 1993 and later integrated into the Post-Apartheid Labour Market Series (PALMS). A series of statistical adjustments are proposed, compared, and applied to primary data with the purpose of generating time-comparable, unbiased estimates, and...

23 March 2020
macroeconomics
Working paper
Long term modelling of household demand and its implications for energy planning
Bruno Merven, Faaiqa Hartley and Jules Schers

This paper proposes an alternative method for modelling long term changes in household consumption in computable general equilibrium models. The analysis is applied to the case of South Africa and focuses on the change in income related lifestyle choices on energy demand and composition. A comparison of adjusting household consumption share (...

20 March 2020
climate
Working paper
Global land reform experiences: A review for South Africa
Rob Davies, Katrina Kosec, Ephraim Nkonya, and Jie Song

This paper reviews land reform in six emerging market economies with some similarities to South Africa, and in sub-Saharan African countries, which share a similar colonial history. While care needs to be taken when trying to transplant policies that have worked in other countries, the paper suggests a number of broad lessons. Land reform is a...

20 March 2020
climate
Working paper
Climate change and developing country growth: the cases of Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia
Channing Arndt, Paul Chinowsky, Charles Fant, Sergey Paltsev, C. Adam Schlosser, Kenneth Strzepek, Finn Tarp, and James Thurlow

We consider the interplay of climate change impacts, global mitigation policies, and the economic interests of developing countries to 2050. Focusing on Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia, we employ a structural approach to biophysical and economic modeling that incorporates climate uncertainty and allows for rigorous comparison of climate,...

19 March 2020
climate
Working paper
South African agricultural productivity in the global context: Comparisons using FAO data
Channing Arndt and Alejandro Nin Pratt

This paper seeks to address the following questions: (a) How productive is South Africa’s agricultural sector? (b) How does it compare to other countries in terms of productivity? The approach taken uses neoclassical growth accounting in defining total factor productivity (TFP) growth as the ratio of output and input growth. There are three...

20 March 2020
climate
Working paper
Shifting from deductions to credits - Unpacking the distributional effects of medical expenditure considerations in South Africa
Senia Nhamo and Edinah Mudimu

The recent National Health Insurance White Paper proposes redirection of medical tax credits revenue towards the financing of the national health insurance. This raises critical questions about the impact on affordability for the poor as well as fundamental legal implications. The 2012 tax reforms which saw the move from deductions to credits...

18 March 2020
public_revenue
Working paper
The elasticity of taxable income - New data and estimates for South Africa
Johannes Hermanus Kemp

The elasticity of taxable income is a key tax policy parameter that plays an important role in the formulation of tax and transfer policy. This paper extends work by Kemp (2019) by using a new panel of individual tax returns and the phenomenon of ‘bracket creep’ to produce updated estimates of the elasticity of taxable income for South Africa....

18 March 2020
public_revenue