Determinants of Agricultural Imports in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Gravity Model
Import dependency on agricultural products in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has been increasing over the last two decades raising a lot of concern on the determinants of agricultural imports and their impact on economic growth. This study examines the determinants of agricultural imports in SSA by applying an augmented gravity model on a panel data for 37 SSA countries over the period 1995-2018. The results show that economic size measured by GDP, arable land endowment, membership to regional trade agreement, cultural proximity measured by sharing of a common language, inflation and governance quality influence agricultural imports positively and are significant. Furthermore, population growth of trading partners, geographical proximity measured by distance between the trading countries, transport costs measured by whether a country is landlocked or not, and agriculture productivity of the importing country negatively influence bilateral agricultural imports flow in SSA. These findings are crucial in understanding agricultural trade flows and formulating sound policies aimed at promoting international agricultural trade for economic growth and development in SSA.