Fiscal Expansion, Adjustment and Economic Growth in Tanzania 1967–2016

John M. Mtui, Michael O. A. Ndanshau


The study analyses the effect of fiscal expansion and adjustment on economic growth in Tanzania over the period 1967 to 2016. Use of descriptive analysis was complemented by econometric analysis based on estimation of an error correction model (ECM) conditioned on co-integration test by bounds (ARDL) technique. The bounds test procedure established the variables of the estimating equation were co-integrated. Expansionary fiscal policy regime was obviated by its negative effect on growth over the period 19671992 and its positive effect during its adjustment over the period 19932016. Other fundamentals, including inflation, human capital, domestic investment, financial deepening, and economic openness over the long-run had the sign theoretically predicted and were statistically significant. In the short-run the ECM regression results confirm the variables of the estimation model were indeed in equilibrium. Even though, results revealed contemporaneous and three-period lagged effects of fiscal expansion (adjustment) on economic growth were negative (positive) and statistically significant. The evidence on conditioning factors, were mixed. Generally, the findings suggest increase in government expenditure may not lead to economic growth over the long-run. Among others, and subject to further empirical works, the results underscore importance of macroeconomic stability for attainment of economic growth.

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[ISSN 0856 2253 (Print) & ISSN 2546-213X (Online)]