On the Origin of the State: Stationary Bandits and Taxation in Eastern Congo

Posted: 24 Nov 2013 Last revised: 13 Jan 2020

Date Written: January 01, 2020

Abstract

A positive demand shock for coltan, a mineral whose bulky output cannot be concealed, leads armed actors to create illicit customs and provide protection at coltan mines, where they settle as :stationary bandits." A similar shock for gold, easy to conceal, leads to stationary bandits in the villages where income from gold is spent, where they introduce illicit mining visas, taxes, and administrations. Having a stationary bandit from a militia or the Congolese army increases welfare. These findings suggest that armed actors may create "essential functions of a state" to better expropriate, which, depending on their goals, can increase welfare.

Suggested Citation

Sanchez de la Sierra, Raul, On the Origin of the State: Stationary Bandits and Taxation in Eastern Congo (January 01, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2358701 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2358701

Raul Sanchez de la Sierra (Contact Author)

University of Chicago ( email )

1307 E 60th st
Chicago, IL Illinois 60637
United States
9174889151 (Phone)
60637 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://raulsanchezdelasierra.com

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