Financial Inclusion, Gender Gaps and Agricultural Productivity in Mali

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Fowowe, Babajide
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African Economic Research Consortium
Sub-Saharan African countries have recorded slow rates of economic growth when compared to other regions, and poverty has only reduced marginally. Amongst the group of sub-Saharan African countries, fragile and post-conflict countries (FPCCs) have performed particularly poorly in various indicators of development. Improvements in agricultural productivity have been identified as important avenues for attaining sustainable development in FPCCs. Financial inclusion and gender equality have the potential to be critical drivers of such improvements in agricultural productivity. This study conducted an empirical investigation of the effects of financial inclusion and gender gaps on agricultural productivity in Mali. The study made use of data from the Living Standards Measurement Study ‒ Integrated Surveys on Agriculture (LSMS‒ISA) for the year 2017 in Mali. The empirical results showed that, financial inclusion has had a positive and significant effect on agricultural productivity in Mali. In addition, the results showed that gender gaps exist in agricultural productivity, and agricultural productivity of women is lower than that of men. The study concludes by providing some policy options for improving financial inclusion and reducing gender gaps, so as to boost agricultural productivity.
Agriculture; Productivity; Financial inclusion; Gender; Mali