November 1, 2009
This paper quantifies the impact of terrorism and conflicts on income per capita growth in Asia for 1970–2004. Our panel estimations show that transnational terrorist attacks had a significant growth-limiting effect. An additional terrorist incident per million persons reduces gross domestic product per capita growth by about 1.5%. In populous countries, many additional attacks are needed to achieve such a large impact. Transnational terrorism reduces growth by crowding-in government expenditures. Unlike developing countries, developed countries are able to absorb terrorism without displaying adverse economic consequences. An internal conflict has the greatest growth concern, more than twice that of transnational terrorism. Conflict variables are associated with smaller investment shares and increased government spending, with the crowding-in of government spending being the dominant influence.