NPR - ANALYSIS OF FACTORS AFFECTING TECHNICAL EFFICIENCY OF SMALLHOLDER MAIZE FARMERS IN ETHIOPIA
Maize production in Ethiopia is characterised by low productivity. The low levels of maize productivity may be the result of technical inefficiencies existing in smallholder maize production. Technical efficiency and therefore productivity can be improved if the factors that determine technical inefficiency are identified. Although some studies determining the determinants of technical efficiency is
available for Ethiopia, the information is very limited and focuses more on production in eastern and western Ethiopia. The aim of this study is therefore to estimate the determinants of technical efficiency of smallholder maize farmers’ in the main maize producing regions of Ethiopia. The findings suggested the presence of considerable levels of technical inefficiency in maize productivity. From the empirical estimation, it is found that age, gender, household size, oxen, extension, irrigation, credit, seed type and soil protection are important factors affecting the technical efficiency of the sampled smallholder maize farmers. There is the possibility of improving the current low maize productivity by removing the technical inefficiencies through increasing farmers’ access to rural credit and extension services, promoting soil and land conservation practices and by promoting small-scale irrigation schemes.
Keywords: maize, smallholder farmers, productivity, technical efficiency, factors affecting technical efficiency, stochastic frontier analysis, access to credit