What is it about?

There is no consensus in the literature about whether the rate of growth in agricultural productivity is slowing We investigate three questions: (i) whether global agricultural total factor productivity (TFP) growth has slowed down in recent decades, and (ii) whether the slowdown in productivity is more significant in industrialized countries. Additionally, we investigate the evolution of TFP growth in the European Union and examine the differences in TFP growth between Old and New Member States

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Why is it important?

Our results are in line with earlier findings. TFP growth has accelerated in world agriculture, largely due to better performance in transition countries. Although TFP growth has accelerated in world agriculture, it has slowed down in industrialized countries. TFP growth in the EU has increased, but at slower rate in recent years. In the Old Member States the growth rate has decreased, whereas in the New Member States it has increased. The results highlight that insufficient spending on productivity-enhancing agricultural R&D in industrialized countries may put future agricultural productivity growth at risk.


For stopping or reversing the slowdown in TFP growth in industrialized countries, sufficient spending on agricultural R&D is essential. Additionally, political instruments can increase or decrease TFP growth. However, the link between single political instruments and productivity is not clear; Further research which increases understanding of the channels through which agricultural policy instruments affect productivity is also important for improving productivity growth.

Professor Imre Ferto
Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences: Budapest

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This page is a summary of: Accounting for TFP Growth in Global Agriculture - a Common-Factor-Approach-Based TFP Estimation, Agris on-line Papers in Economics and Informatics, December 2020, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, DOI: 10.7160/aol.2020.120401.
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