Sources of Agricultural Productivity Differences between Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria using DEA

Sources of Agricultural Productivity Differences between Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria using DEA

Emile J. Salame (Lebanese University, Beirut, Lebanon)
DOI: 10.4018/ijpmat.2014040104
OnDemand PDF Download:
No Current Special Offers


In the present chapter agricultural productivity in four countries Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria is examined. A thorough look at previous studies that considered those countries is provided. The data used is drawn from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and adjusted, covering the period of 1972 through 2006. The study utilizes Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to calculate Malmquist productivity indices. The study looks at the tendencies in agricultural productivity for the four countries throughout the 35 years, in which wars and conflicts took place. The estimates of efficiency change, technical change, and total factor productivity change obtained for the four countries are calculated. Moreover, a model for technical inefficiency effects in a stochastic frontier production function is suggested to provide a possible explanation of the sources of inefficiencies and the effect of each inefficiency variable.
Article Preview


A few previous studies looked closely at agricultural productivity in the four countries mentioned in Table 1. Belhaj Hassine and Kandil (2009) discuss the link between trade openness, agricultural productivity growth and poverty reduction in some Mediterranean countries including Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria. Their results show positive effects of trade openness on farming efficiency and productivity. Another recent study shows that these four countries can be both innovative and efficient and Jordan and Lebanon had the highest Agricultural TFP growth, 4.2 percent (3 percent growth in efficiency and 1.2 percent growth in technical change) and 3.4 percent respectively (Belloumi & Matoussi, 2009). During the 1980s, Syria had a negative 3 percent TFP which pushed the government to adopt more liberal agricultural sector policies and at the end of the 1990s Syria became a net exporter of many agricultural products (Belloumi & Matoussi, 2009). Furthermore, it’s worth mentioning that the Israeli 1.6 percent average growth in TFP was due to a 1.3 percent growth in technical change (TC) and 0.3 percent growth in efficiency change.

Table 1.
Studies of inter-country agricultural productivity that include the four countries of interest (1993-2009)
PaperMethodOriginal and Main Source of Data UsedCountries of Interest Included SeparatelyYears CoveredCountries
Craig et al. (1997) CDaFAOIsrael and Syria1961-199098
Arnade(1998) DEAbFAO and USDA’Sd World Agriculture: Trends and Indicators(1990)Israel1961-199370
Martin and Mitra (1999) CD and TLcCrego, Larson, Butzer and Mundlak (1998)Israel1967-199249
Ali Hussain et al. (2001)CDCentral Bank of Jordan Annual Reports and others*Jordan1981-19961
Rao, Coelli and Alauddin (2004) DEAFAOIsrael and Syria1970-2000111
Belhaj Hassine and Kandil (2009) CDFAO and WDIe (for 36 agricultural commodities)Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria1990-200514
Belloumi and Matoussi (2009) DEAFAO and WDIIsrael, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria1970-200016
Evenson and Fuglie (2009) CDFAOJordan, Lebanon and Syria1970-200587

* Monthly statistical Bulletin, ministry of agriculture, ministry of Labor, statistical yearbook, National Account Studies of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission of Western Asia region and other individual sources from studies. a Cobb-Douglas b Data Envelopment Analysis c Translog d United States Department of Agriculture e World Development Indicators.

Complete Article List

Search this Journal:
Open Access Articles
Volume 7: 2 Issues (2019)
Volume 6: 2 Issues (2018)
Volume 5: 2 Issues (2017)
Volume 4: 2 Issues (2016)
Volume 3: 2 Issues (2015)
Volume 2: 2 Issues (2014)
Volume 1: 4 Issues (2012)
View Complete Journal Contents Listing