The Effect of Increasing Government Employment on Growth: Some Evidence from Africa


James P. F. Gordon

Publication Date:

March 1, 1997

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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate


In contrast to the experience in industrial countries, government sectors in a number of African countries grew rapidly in relative size through the 1980s and early 1990s, implying a differential between measured GDP growth and growth of private sector activity. In these countries, the government sector was also an important source of employment growth. Leaving aside issues of crowding out, boosting growth in this way raises questions of fiscal sustainability. It also urges caution in interpreting growth performance.


Working Paper No. 1997/033



Publication Date:

March 1, 1997



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