Current knowledge of the livestock marketing system in Ethiopia is poor and inadequate for designing policies and institutions to reduce inefficiencies in the system and improve the distribution of livestock. This paper addresses this knowledge gap by using survey data from 38 livestock markets conducted in 2002 in the highlands of Ethiopia to examine the structure and conduct of livestock markets. It also examines changes in the structure and conduct since 1991 when the agricultural development-led industrialization and market liberalization policies and strategies were launched. The findings suggest that improvement in stocking facilities can help to increase and sustain marketing activities throughout the year and, thus, reduce problems associated with seasonality and unstable prices. In addition, improvement in credit, licensing, and means of enforcing market contracts will also be important.


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