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NIGERIA’S COCOA EXPORTS: A GRAVITY MODEL APPROACH
ABSTRACT: What are the major factors affecting Nigeria’s cocoa export flows? In answering this question, the authors suggest a commodityspecific gravity model with three different analytical approaches, (the Heckman Sample Selection Model, the Generalised Least Square, and the Poisson Pseudo Maximum Likelihood), based on a period of 24 years of panel data for Nigeria and it’s 36 importing partners to estimate the models. The results showed that GDP, exchange rate policy, WTO, EU, and colonial link are positively associated with the Nigerian cocoa export flows. Further, the negative impact of the GDP per capita, landlocked, distance, AU, and ECOWAS are observed. The need for the expansion of exports to the trading partners, especially the EU members (Netherlands, Germany, France, United Kingdom, Belgium, Spain, etc.), Canada, Malaysia, and the USA is particularly highlighted. These results are important for the formulation of future trade policy that could boost up the Nigerian cocoa exports. This would eventually contribute to the diversification of the Nigerian exports and also enhance the country’s foreign earnings.
Key words: cocoa exports, Heckman section model, Generalized least square (GLS), Poisson pseudo-maximum-likelihood (PPML), panel data.