The Impact of Small-Scale Communal Irrigation Project on Income Distribution

Author: Nerelito P. Pascual


The impact of small-scale communal irrigation project on income distribution was determined among factors of production, among earners, and across households. Farm survey data from Quezon Province, Philippines were obtained and analyzed using the “with-without” and “before-after” project comparative methods. Analysis of the relative factor shares was also made using the Constant Elasticity of Substitution (CFS) production function. The return to each production factor was generally higher in the “with, or after” irrigation condition as contrasted to the return to each production factor in the “without” and the “before” irrigation situations. The increase in capital share, however, was generally larger than the increase in labor and management shares. This was mainly attributed to a significantly. lower labor intensity on the irrigated farms compared with the labor intensity on the unirrigated farms. The real returns to the various earners were generally’ larger on the irrigated areas than on those without irrigation facilities. However, the farmers benefited from irrigation more than the landlords and hired laborers in the “before-after” comparison. The indices of income inequality on the distribution of income among the respondents in the “with, or after” and “before” irrigation situations showed that irrigation caused a little improvement in the income distribution across farmer-households.

Keywords : Communal irrigation. Income distribution. Factor shares. Earner shares. Farmer-households.

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