Gender and the CF-EU EPA
Key Socio-economic Issues
July 28, 2008
Background on gender as an analytic
Trade theory and implications for the
Fiscal and macroeconomic issues in the
Challenges in gender and economics
research in the Caribbean
What is gender?
Social rules, norms, customs and practices by
which biological differences between males and
females are translated into socially constructed
differences between men and women and boys
Results in differences in how the two genders
are valued and which leads to unequal social and
economics opportunities and life chances.
Why is gender important?
• Gender inequality is constructed both through
formal laws and through unwritten norms and
It is not only pervasive across all societies but is
also the most prevalent form of social
disadvantage within societies.
It cuts across all other forms of inequality such as
class, caste and race.
Critically in the context of economic development,
gender is the key to the organisation of production
and reproduction within society.
Engendering economics entails a recognition that
gender inequalities exist in economic institutions
and policies, and aims to redress these inequalities
through the pursuit of egalitarian outcomes.
Two different starting points for defining what
economics is about:
1.efficient allocation of scarce resources amongst autonomous
[rational] individuals [given tastes and preferences] or;
2.accumulation and distribution of surplus output [or human
provision – how do people provide for themselves].
This approach allows for explicit consideration of
power, which is typically ignored in NC analysis.
Neoclassical trade theory rests on highly
Hecksher-Ohlin, Samuelson 2x2x2 models
Many unrealistic assumptions
Free movement of capital & labour (with free trade
a substitute when this fails)
Constant returns to scale
bring in unequal exchange, competitive vs
comparative advantage, social & historical context
Distributional implications are key:
Skilled vs unskilled labour;
North vs South
Women vs Men
These need not necessarily be in opposition, but
failure to recognize differences can produce this
NC theory says free trade good for women
Get rid of wages so labour markets can ‘clear’
Downward flexibility of wages boosts employment
Men dominate trade unions; women less
EPA as free trade agreements
The EPAs are built on neoclassical
assumptions about gains from trade.
Narrow conceptions of market access
seen as naturally promoting ACP development.
Little consideration of:
Supply side issues
Social and economic inequalities and power
differentials between and within the parties
These critical factors increase vulnerability to
costs and limit potential to take advantage of
Gender and Poverty
Gender inequalities exists across income levels,
but vary in dimension.
Ex. an increase in the price of basic food affects both
poor men and women but in different ways,
However little impact on wealthy women or men;
Alternatively, the existence of the ‘glass ceiling’ and
policies to address it affects professional women and
men, but is of little relevance to the poor.
Poverty is a gendered phenomenon.
Men and women experience poverty in different and
unequal ways and become poor via different, though
often related processes.
Caribbean Development Challenges
Region characterized by significant heterogeneity
Antigua & Barbuda Guyana
economy (>50%) economy (35%)
$12,149 per capita $1,193 per capita
Avg GDP growth Avg GDP growth
6.0% (2001-6) 1.2% (2001-6)
57th in HDR 97th in HDR
Pop’l 83,000 Pop’l 760,000
Development issues cut across
Despite wide variation in macro indicators
countries in region face the same challenges.
Narrow production structures
High levels of poverty and inequality
Similar social dynamics around poverty, inequality,
class and gender.
Gendered Poverty Cycle
The poverty cycle has clear gender
dimensions due to women’s reproductive
Compounded in region b/c of high number of
women-headed households, esp among the poor
Low household income->poor health and
malnutrition->inability to perform at school-
>increased likelihood of dropping out-
>participation in crime/transactional
sex/vulnerability to HIV/AIDS.
Children face a particular set of challenges
What of single men with weak social networks
Guyana Basic economic indicators
Table 1(a) Basic Economic Indicators
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004
GDP at market prices (G$ bn) 130.0 133.4 138.4 144.1 156.4
GDP (US$ m) 712.6 712.2 725.9 743.2 788.7
Real GDP growth (%) -1.4 2.3 1.1 -0.7 1.6
Consumer price inflation (av; %) 6.1 2.6 5.3 6.0 4.7
Exports of goods fob (US$ m) 505.2 490.3 494.9 512.8 589.0
Imports of goods fob (US$ m) 585.4 584.1 563.1 571.7 646.9
Current-account balance (US$ m) -115.3 -133.8 -110.6 -90.6 -62.0
Foreign-exchange reserves excl gold (US$ m) 305.0 287.3 284.5 276.4 231.8
Exchange rate (av) G$:US$ 182.4 187.3 190.7 193.9 198.3
Source: Economist Intelligence Unit, 2005. Export and import data exclude services trade.
Table 1(b) Economic and trade structure
National Income (2003)
Origins of gross domestic product % of total Components of gross domestic product % of total
Agriculture, forestry & fishing 28.9 Private consumption 49.7
Mining & quarrying 10.1 Government consumption 26.3
Construction 8.5 Gross fixed capital formation 35
T ransport & communications 10.1 Exports of goods & services 103.6
Government 12.5 Imports of goods & services -117.8
T otal incl others 100 T otal incl changes in stocks 100
Principal exports (fob, 2004) Principal imports (cif, 2004)
By main commodity group Percentage By main commodity group Percentage
Agricultural products 47.1 Agricultural products 14.4
Fuel and mining products 4.7 Fuel and mining products 27.8
Manufactures 21.8 Manufactures 57.4
By value US$ m By value US$ m
Gold 145.1 Intermediate goods 168.5
Sugar 136.5 Consumer goods 154.7
Rice 55.1 Fuels & lubricants 169.6
Bauxite & alumina 44.7 Capital goods 135.7
By main destination Percentage By main origin Percentage
1. European Union (25) 35.6 United States 29.9
2. Canada 18.7 T rinidad and T obago 26.6
3. United States 16.4 Netherlands Antilles 9.4
4. T rinidad and Tobago 6.9 European Union (25) 8.6
5. Jamaica 6.0 Japan 6.2
Source: WTO Country Profile, 2005; Economist Intelligence Unit, 2005.
Guyana sectoral employment
Sugar (16% GDP) employs over 10% of labor
90% men in official statistics; sector provides
indirect employment for thousands more.
Rice (10% GDP) employs another ~10% of
labor force; supports 18,000 families
Mining (15% GDP) 9,471 jobs in formal sector
Manufacturing employs 30,631, 23% women
Major gender differentials in labor force
40% women vs 80% men. Highlights importance
of informal sector.
Guyana sectoral employment
Tourism key foreign exchange earner
Women’s official employment exceeds men
(65% to 35%)
Community social and personal services only
other sector to emplo more women than men.
(65% to 35% as well)
trade employs slightly more men than women;
unusual in the Caribbean. May be another
reflection of women’s low labor participation rates.
Table 1(c) Guyana-EU trade 1990, 1995, 2000-2003 (in millions of euros)
1990 1995 2000 2001 2002 2003
EU agro imports from Guyana 94.5 104.9 158.8 148.3 133.2 132.7
Total EU imports from Guyana 118.5 146 205.3 204.4 182.5 181.7
EU agro imports as % of total 80% 72% 77% 73% 73% 73%
Indexed agro exports 100 111 168 157 141 140
Indexed TOTAL exports 100 123 173 172 154 153
Guyana agro imports from the EU 4.2 9.1 17.2 17.6 18.2 16.4
Total Guyana imports from the EU 44.8 72.5 70.6 78 101 120.9
Agro imports as % of total 9% 13% 24% 23% 18% 14%
Indexed agro exports 100 219 414 425 438 394
Indexed TOTAL exports 100 162 158 174 226 270
Balance (EU exports-imports) -73.7 -73.5 -134.7 -126.4 -81.5 -60.8
Source: Adapted from Eurostat, EU15 Trade, 2004.
Guyana-EU trade pattern
Exports to the EU
EU exports cover only 141 tariff lines (8-digit level).
Further, 90% of its EU-bound exports are concentrated
in a mere 7 product groups.
These 7 groups based around 3 commodities: sugar,
diamonds & rice (56%, 20% and 14% of total trade)
These exports are unrefined commodities i.e. with very
little value-added. This, it should be noted, is the norm
across most CARIFORUM members.
Guyana’s EU-bound exports are one of the most highly
concentrated (exceeded only by the banana-exporting
This highlights the narrow production structure in
Guyana and the need for trade and industrial policies
that support diversification.
Guyana-EU trade pattern
Imports from the EU
In stark contrast to the high level of concentration of
exports to the EU, Guyana’s imports from the EU are
spread out across 1,303 tariff lines.
This compares to 141 tariff lines on the export side.
However, a single tariff line, aircraft parts, (assessed at
the 5% level) accounted for 40% of total trade by value
in 2003 (Euro 46 million) and the next highest line
(milk and solid cream) accounted for 4% of total trade.
All of the remaining 1,301 tariff lines accounted for
less than 2% of total imports (see table 3).
Potential for trade diversion under the EPA (i.e.
benefits to the EU)
Antigua: basic economic indicators
B asic macroeconomic indicators, 2000-06
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006
Real GDP at 1,249.80 1,269.00 1,294.60 1,350.40 1,420.90 1,496.30 1,668.60
GDP per 21,517.00 21,073.00 21,091.90 21,664.80 22,645.50 23,902.00 26,968.80
GDP growth 3.3 1.5 2 4.3 5.2 5.3 11.3
Agriculture 3.9 3.8 3.8 3.8 3.7 3.6 3.3
Mining 1.7 1.7 1.7 1.7 1.4 1.7 2.2
Manufacturin 2.3 2.3 2.3 2.3 2.1 1.9 1.7
Electricity and 3 3.9 3.1 2.9 2.9 2.9 2.8
Construction 12.8 13.4 13.8 14.1 13.9 16.2 19.9
Wholesale and 10.9 10.4 10.1 10.3 10.1 9.9 10.3
Hotels and 11.5 10.2 9.5 10 10.1 9.9 9.1
Transport and 20.5 20.2 20 20.5 21.7 20.8 20.2
Financial and 16.3 16 17.1 16.5 16.7 16.1 15
Government 17.5 17.4 18 17.7 17.4 16.8 15.2
Other Services 7.6 7.4 7.6 7.3 7.3 7 6.6
Less inputed 8 6.4 7.1 7.3 7.2 7 6.5
OECS Services exports
Travel, commercial and transportation
services key in OECS.
Ex. Travel services receipts US$914m in 2003,
triple goods receipts.
Services comprise 80% of OECS exports &
over 85% of Antigua exports
Travel services exports 73% of OECS services
exports; 70% and 65% of Antigua & St Vincent.
Commercial services 16% of OECS services
exports; 30% & 20% of Dominica & St. Vincent.
Transp. services 10% of OECS services exports
Services sector employment
Services provides ~70% OECS employment
Tourism 40%; government 20%.
Women tend to outnumber men in services
Antigua women comprise
60% hotel & restaurant sector,
55% of financial services;
54% of wholesale/retail trade
Key issue though #s but relative placement of
women and men, and intersection with class.
Women concentrated in housekeeping in hotels
Glass ceiling in white collar jobs
Poor male edu performance and implications for
participation in knowledge intensive services.
OECS Services trade performance
Slow growth in total services exports,
especially in latter half of period 1993-2003
3.2% vs 4.6% for total CARICOM
Performance weakest in Dom & Antigua with
contractions in latter half of period.
Travel exports similarly performance
3% growth; 6% in Dom & STK; flat in AB & STKN
Commercial services 4.5% growth
15% growth in first half of period; 5% contraction
in latter half
Due to 30% contraction in insurance and financial
Result: ~20% loss global services mkt share
OECS Services competitiveness
OECS Services sector critical but exhibits
Tourism product characterized by high cost
Grenada survey suggests:
high cost of capital; high cost of doing business;
Investment incentives costly (9.5%-16%
GDP) but showing little benefits.
Mode 4 services trade important but benefits
are through remittances and difficult to
quantify, esp relative to cost of emigration
(long term social and economic costs)
OECS Merchandise trade
Goods trade 20% of exports; 70% imports
Worsening trade balance (1.25-1.4) due to
rising imports and stagnant exports.
EU-bound exports worse performing, annual
Consistent growth of exports to CARICOM (6.5%)
and NA (10%, latter half of period)
Composition of goods exports worrying in
face of EPA:
EU exports low value commodities e.g. bananas
NA exports relatively high value-added technology
intensive electronic and electric goods
Agriculture in Antigua
Antigua least agro-focused but sector still
critical, esp for the poor.
Antigua agro 3.6% of GDP. Employs 8% of
labor force, (~80% men in official data)
50% output fruits, veg, ground prov. for local mkts
50% fisheries, incl lobster for export
Men dominate fastest growing segment of
Women concentrated in least competitive sector of
fruits and veg;
Key issues include gender differentials in
agro growth and exports; food security.
Gender & Livestock holdings in StL
Only 3% of all households own small
livestock (2% of the rural poor)
10% of all households own large livestock,
including 19% of the rural poor.
Women-headed households are slightly more
likely to own small livestock e.g. chickens, but
are significantly less likely to own large
livestock e.g. cows, goats or pigs.
Rearing small livestock may offer greater potential
to earn a steady income as small livestock may be
more readily sold than large livestock such as
Focus groups confirmed that a significant number
of women reared chickens for income.
Data shows two key trends in the region:
Declining export performance in services,
agriculture and manufacturing
Important gender differentials in labor market
Informal sector data is crucial
Understanding micro-dynamics of competitiveness
to inform policy and progammatic action