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Abstract

We propose in this paper a methodology based on the vector error correction (VCE) model. This modeling approach makes it possible to use a large database to model the impact of agricultural mechanization on cropland in Benin. The results of the VEC model estimates confirm a positive relationship between agricultural mechanization and the areas planted of paddy rice, millet and yams. Moreover, the findings suggest that agricultural mechanization is still far to boost the land uses of cotton, maize and cassava, despite the importance of cotton in the Beninese economy on the one hand, and the key roles of maize and cassava in diet in Benin, on the other hand. Agricultural mechanization is far from being a reality in Benin's agricultural sector to the extent that public agricultural investments are below the Maputo agreements (Note 1). An effective agricultural mechanization must opt for cereals whose investments in agricultural machinery are less expensive compared to cotton. This strategy of agricultural mechanization makes it possible to better ensure food security, unlike the intensive cotton production, whose terms of trade are always unfavorable and dependent on subsidies from the North.

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