Convergência da renda agropecuária em Minas Gerais, 1996-2006 / Agricultural income convergence in Minas Gerais, 1996-2006




In the last few years, Minas Gerais gradually increased its participation in national agricultural GDP. Currently, Minas Gerais is the main producer of coffee beans, milk, potatoes and garlic, also having the largest horses herd and the second largest cattle herd in the country. However, due to regional differences, the process of agricultural development has occurred with different intensities, according to each region of the state. In the last decades, many public policies have been elaborated aiming the reduction of inequalities in the field, such as credit policies and investment policies in education. Thus, the present study examined the economic growth of the agricultural sector in Minas Gerais, between 1996 and 2006, seeking to verify the existence - or not - of agricultural income convergence and quantify the impact of credit policies and educational policies on agricultural economic growth of Minas Gerais. The income convergence is the process in which the poorest start to show higher rates of economic growth, for the richest, so that all regions converge to a single state of economic growth, called steady-state. Seeking verification of this process of income convergence, this work was based on the theory of economic growth and income convergence, and the relations between rural credit, human capital and economic growth. Analytically, we used the absolute and conditional β-convergence tests and the testes proposed by Quah (1993) and Drennan and Lobo (1999). The results obtained in β- convergence tests indicated the existence of absolute income convergence among the municipalities of Minas Gerais. The conditional convergence analysis indicated that rural credit and investment in human capital positively affected the process of income convergence, reducing the time required for municipalities to reach the steady state. In other words, educational policies and credit policies favored the process of economic growth and income convergence in the agricultural sector. The results also showed that the regions where the agricultural sector is more developed - Triangulo Mineiro and Alto Paranaíba - have a higher speed of convergence than regions where the agricultural sector has underperformed, as Jequitinhonha - Mucuri and Norte de Minas. Thus, regional differences still persist, since different regions have different speeds of convergence and reach the steady state at different times. According to the results, the developed regions will reach the steady state about 28 years earlier than the poorer regions. Quah (1993) and Drennan and Lobo (1999) tests confirm the existence of absolute convergence of income, strengthening the validity of previous results.


capital humano minas gerais crescimento e desenvolvimento economico income convergence convergência de renda crédito rural agricultural sector rural credit human capital minas gerais setor agropecuário

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