How to Feed the World in 2050: Macroeconomic Environment, Commodity Markets -- A Longer Term Outlook

33 Pages Posted: 12 Jun 2013 Last revised: 13 Jun 2013

Date Written: October 12, 2009

Abstract

The recent commodity boom was the longest and broadest of the post-World War II period. Although most prices have declined sharply since their mid-2008 peak, they are still considerably higher than 2003, the beginning of the boom. Apart from strong and sustained economic growth, the recent boom was fueled by numerous other factors; including low past investment in extractive commodities, weak dollar, fiscal expansion in many countries, and, perhaps, investment fund activity. On the other hand, the diversion of some food commodities to the production of bio-fuels, adverse weather conditions, global stock declines to historical lows, and government policies, including export bans and prohibitive taxes, accelerated the price increases that eventually led to the 2008 rally. This paper concludes that the increased link between energy and non-energy commodity prices, strong demand by developing countries - when the current economic downturn reverses course - and changing weather patterns, will be the dominant forces that are likely to shape developments in commodity markets.

Keywords: commodity prices, long-term prospects, global economy

JEL Classification: R13, C68, Q17, O13, J11

Suggested Citation

van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique and Osorio-Rodarte, Israel and Burns, Andrew and Baffes, John, How to Feed the World in 2050: Macroeconomic Environment, Commodity Markets -- A Longer Term Outlook (October 12, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2277017 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2277017

Dominique Van der Mensbrugghe

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States
202-473-0052 (Phone)
202-522-1159 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/dvandermensbrugghe

Israel Osorio-Rodarte (Contact Author)

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Andrew Burns

World Bank

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/aburns

John Baffes

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/jbaffes

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
29
Abstract Views
429
PlumX Metrics