No 1/2014, March

Awareness of Climate Change and Implications for Attaining the Millennium Development Goals (MDGS) in Niger Delta Region of Nigeria


The Niger Delta region of Nigeria is at the centre of both the economic wealth and climate change in the context of pressing national economic issues. It produces the nation’s major foreign exchange earner- crude oil, has abundant fishery and marine resources- all of which are threatened by vagaries in climatic factors. The study was conducted to evaluate awareness of climate change and implications for attaining the MDGs in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. The study made use of a multi-stage sampling technique to select three hundred and sixty respondents across three Niger Delta States (Delta, Edo, Ondo). Data for the study were collected with the aid of well-structured questionnaires assisted with interview schedules administered on the respondents. Data collected were analysed using descriptive statistics. The analysis of awareness of climate change indicated that level of awareness is low but improving. It was found, however, that the mass media has played the most significant roles in climate change awareness in the study area. The results also indicated that the respondents had been practicing some indigenous and emerging adaptive strategies to climate change for many years. This study concluded that more awareness about climate change in the Niger Delta region have implications for attaining the MDGs.

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Accessibility of the Regional Information Based on the Regional Information Structure Framework


The paper addresses the issue of effective implementation of the information and communication technologies in rural areas with the special focus on the accessibility of regional information and big collections of data related to the location.Presented results comes from long term research at the Department of Information Technologies FEM CULS in Prague in the areas of regional informatics and digital divide, and are compliant with strategic goals of Digital Agenda for Europe: A Europe 2020 Initiative. Description and definition of the general framework of the accessibility of regional information – Regional Information Structure (RIS) and Regional Information Relation (RIR) is introduced in the paper.

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Key Factors Affecting the Profitability of Farms in the Czech Republic


The paper deals with assessment of the economic situation of Czech farms and its development in a long time- line. The analysis is based on our own database of farms in a sample of farms classified by LFA, production type and size. An increase of production is mainly caused by an increase in crop production revenues, animal and non-agricultural production revenues are decreasing. An increase of labour productivity is an important tendency in the period influenced mainly by decreasing the number of workers. Due to the high dependency of profit or loss in agriculture on environmental conditions, the development of indicators is characterized by significant fluctuations. The dependence of profit on subsidies is greatest in the mountain LFA. Enterprises focused on crop production are the least dependent on subsidies, but their profit is the most affected by other external economic conditions, particularly by climatic conditions and price developments.

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Spatial Data Monitoring and Mobile Applications – Comparison of Methods for Parsing JSON in Android Operating System


The paper generally addresses the issue of processing the JSON format for mobile devices on the Android operating system platform. Implementation has been tested and demonstrated using the processing of an extensive collection of spatial data generated from game movement monitoring (the Game Online application). The potential for use not only in the sphere of agriculture, rural development and environmental protection is in general practically unlimited, and with the growing number and availability of mobile devices the discussed issue gains further relevance. The ways of obtaining current data for the operation of the application are essential for the development of applications intended for mobile devices. As direct access to databases is not possible, it is necessary to transfer preselected data between the client and server using a suitable transfer format. This is catered for by data serialization, where one of the applied forms is the JSON format. Specifically, the paper compares methods of its parsing, i.e. transfer to objects, or, where applicable, collections, which may be utilised in the applications for further processing. The decisive factor here is namely the time which represents, in particular, the duration of the transfer proper.

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Agriculture Drought Risk Management Using Standardized Precipitation Index and AEZ Model


The objective of this study was to assess the drought risk management in the region under study. The SPI method was adopted for drought monitoring in Hamadan Province, Iran. The temporal and spatial extent of the area vulnerable to drought was delineated using AEZ model, GIS and other softwares. Five zones were recognized based on the drought severity index. Selection of compatible crops with respect to climate and land production capability of a region specially in drought condition is one of the effective elements to increase the water productivity in agriculture, based on Agro-ecological Zoning(AEZ) model, developed by FAO, suitable spatial extension of wheat cultivation, which is the main crop in Hamadan Province, were delineated. According to this study the most suitable lands potentially available for wheat production are located in the north-east region and a part of the central region, where as, least suitable ones can be observed in the north-east and the south – east regions. The results of the risk analysis study show that south-east, north and central regions are susceptible to longest duration intense droughts where as long duration droughts are intensive in north, west and south-east regions. The overlaid and integrated maps of risks with the maps obtained after applying the AEZ model resulted into the map of spatial suitability of potential crop production for each class of risk (longest duration and most intensive durations). This enables the decision makers to define spatial priority of crop cultivation and manage various potential regions susceptible to drought risks.

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Econometric Analysis of the Nexus of Exchange Rate Deregulation and Agricultural Share of Gross Domestic Product in Nigeria


This study examined the relationship between exchange rate deregulation and the agricultural share of gross domestic product in Nigeria from an econometric perspective using time series data. The data were analysed using augmented dickey fuller unit root test, unrestricted vector autoregression and pairwise granger causality. The results of the data analysis revealed the existence of unidirectional causality from exchange rate to agricultural share of gross domestic production in Nigeria and this implies that market driven exchange rate policy has been significant in influencing the trend in agricultural share of gross domestic production in Nigeria. However, it is recommended that the monetary authority of Nigeria should closely monitor the movement of the market driven exchange rate so that exchange rate deregulation does not become counterproductive through unhealthy price distortions on agricultural production, international trade and foreign direct investment in the agricultural sector of Nigeria’s economy.

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Asymmetry in Price Transmission of the Czech Wheat Agri-food Chain


This article focuses on the assessment of the symmetry or asymmetry of price transmission in selected partial verticals of foodstuffs wheat in the Czech Republic, specifically of smooth flour, white baked goods and consumer bread. The asymmetry of price transmissions is examined in the relationship of agricultural producer price – industrial producer price and industrial producer price – consumer price. The analysis itself is based upon the concept of symmetrical and asymmetrical behavior, where the effect of positive and negative changes in prices on individual levels of the vertical to connecting levels is examined, as well as also symmetry and asymmetry of price transmissions between connecting price levels. For the fulfillment of the objective, adjusted vector error correction models and impulse-response analysis are utilized. The analysis is based upon time series of individual prices containing monthly data within the period of January 1999 – October 2011. The analysis itself showed that some relationships between prices on individual levels of the analyzed product verticals show a symmetrical nature, while other partial relationships are of an asymmetrical nature. However, from a comprehensive standpoint, verticals can be considered to be asymmetrical and the asymmetry can be called “upward asymmetry”. Further, the analysis shows a slow reaction of prices to unit price shocks, but even despite the length of the period, a new equilibrium level is reached after deviation from a state of equilibrium.

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The Russian Federation – Specifics of the Sugar Market


The Russian Federation represents a significant force in the global production and consumption of beet sugar. Its population which is in excess of more than 140 million people consumes over 5.6 million net tons of sugar annually, and the amount is steadily growing. The Russian sugar industry was unable to meet the domestic demand, especially during the economic transformation period (sugar beet and sugar production are very sensitive in relation to changes in economic, political, production and consumption environment (Špička, Janotová, 2013), and Russia has thus become heavily dependent on imports of both refined and raw sugar. After a long period of stagnation the Russian Federation has over the past decade focused on promoting plans for restoring the production capacities of both the sugar beet growing and sugar manufacture.The government programme promoted at both the federal and regional levels has very significantly boosted the production potential and reduced Russia’s dependence on imports of sugar. This article aims to identify major trends and directions affecting the development of the Russian sugar industry in the past two decades. From the analysis outlined below it follows that the period of 1992 - 2000 was a very critical time for the Russian sugar industry during which there was a downswing in its cultivation and processing capacities. There was a significant decline not only in the quantitative but also qualitative characteristics of the Russian sugar industry.As a consequence, there has been a fall in competitiveness and a significant increase in import dependency. In the period 2000 - 2012, then was contrary to resuscitate the Russian market and the economy. This was reflected in the growth of sugar beet production, as well as in the growth of its own sugar production. Russia‘s dependence on imports of sugar from abroad dropped significantly and changed the structure of traded goods containing sugar. Due to a series of reforms, and to strengthen the competitiveness of Russian sugar industry, especially in relation to countries with which Russia has signed an agreement on customs union or free trade area.

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Monopolistic Competition in the International Trade of Agricultural Products


The aim of the paper is to describe the behavior of international firms using model of monopolistic competition, which is using optimizations of the number of firms in the sector and its characteristics, best corresponding to the needs of international trade. The assumption for application of the monopolistic competition model in the international trade area of agro production is the idea that trade increases the market size. In the sectors where increasing returns to scale apply it is valid that both heterogeneity of the goods the country produces and the extent of their production are influenced by the market size. The analysis has shown the validity of the model for the production of agricultural commodities; the expansion of the market or the increase of subsidies and thus decrease of the cost of farmers caused by an increase of the number of firms in the sector.

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The Regional Efficiency of Mixed Crop and Livestock Type of Farming and Its Determinants


The mixed crop and livestock farming represents significant share in agricultural output in the Czech Republic. So, it raises questions about determinants of its production efficiency. The aim of the article is to evaluate production efficiency and its determinants of mixed crop and livestock farming among the EU regions. The DEA method with variable returns to scale (DEAVRS) reveals efficient and inefficient regions including the scale efficiency. In the next step, the two-sample t-test determines differences of economic and structural indicators between efficient and inefficient regions. The research reveals that substitution of labor by capital/ contract work positively affects income indicator Farm Net Value Added per AWU. The significant economic determinants of production efficiency in mixed type of farming are crop output per hectare, livestock output per livestock unit, productivity of energy and capital. Agricultural enterprises in inefficient regions have more extensive structure and produce more non-commodity output (public goods).

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