Is plantation agriculture good for the poor? Evidence from Indonesia’s palm oil expansion

Vol: 
2015/12
Author name: 
Ryan Edwards
Year: 
2015
Month: 
August
Abstract: 

I study the poverty impacts of plantation-based agricultural growth, focusing on Indonesian palm oil. Using rich new administrative panel data, I exploit exogenous variation arising from Indonesia’s unique institutions and the data’s longitudinal features to identify causal effects. Increasing the palm oil share of land in a district by ten percentage points corresponds to a ten percent reduction in its poverty rate, and a narrowing of the poverty gap. Effects are similar across regions and at the province level. Oil palm expansion tends to be followed by a sustained boost to the value of agricultural output, manufacturing output, and district GDP.

Publication file: 

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