Convergence of real per capita GDP within COMESA countries: A panel unit root evidence

Abstract

This article examines the absolute and conditional convergence of real GDP per capita in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) during the period 1950-2003. Income departures across countries were evaluated from several panel data unit root tests. We find no evidence supporting the existence of convergence process for the income in the COMESA. Nevertheless, applying economic development criterion allows to identity two absolute convergence clubs into the COMESA, one for the most four developed countries (Egypt, Libya, Mauritius, Seychelles), and one other for the fourteen less developed ones. Thus, we show that most economies of COMESA are locked into a sustained poverty trap process.

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