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Chapter 1

One result of the analysis is that it is not so much the costs of tsetse and trypanosomiasis control but the benefits from animal production which determine the overall economics of any approach. Another result is that the relative economic preferential of the different approaches changes according to their natural potential, the trypanosomiasis challenge and other specific characteristics of an area. This is in contrast with the common strategy of rolling up the country irrespective of differing conditions.

Hans Jahnke, 1974

The sparsity of literature citations in this chapter is an indication of how little work has been done on the economics of trypanosomiasis control. Ten years ago even this incomplete account could not have been written. There is an urgent need for more hard facts.

Tony Jordan, 1986

Empirical evidence that has accumulated during the last ten years supports previous claims that trypanosomiasis is an important constraint on agricultural production in Africa.

Brent Swallow, PAAT, 2000

It is three decades since the publication of Hans Jahnke’s thesis in 1974, which was the first detailed study of the economics of trypanosomiasis in livestock in a particular area. Work in this area only took off slowly thereafter, as evidenced by the quote above from Jordan (1986), but during the last ten to fifteen years knowledge in this area has grown immensely (Swallow in PAAT, 2000). In recent years a significant volume of work has come to fruition, which has greatly enhanced our understanding both of the spatial distribution of the tsetse and trypanosomiasis problem through the use of GIS techniques, and of its socio-economic impact on livestock keepers and farmers in many parts of Africa. There is now an established and wide-ranging literature on the subject, which was reviewed and summarized by Swallow in PAAT (2000). There have been a number of studies which have tried to quantify the overall impact of the disease on a continental scale (Kristjanson et al., 1999; PAAT, 2000) and the review by Budd (1999) in particular has led to a revisiting of the concept of tsetse eradication. In addition to Swallow’s paper (PAAT, 2000), two other papers in the PAAT Technical and Scientific Series deal first with the sociocultural aspects of livestock and agricultural systems of tsetse-infested areas in West Africa by Kamuanga (PAAT, 2003) and second with the use of GIS techniques to identify and select potential areas for tsetse control in West Africa by Hendrickx, de la Rocque and Mattioli (PAAT, in prep.).

The terms of reference for this paper were to review the economics of tsetse and trypanosomiasis control or eradication and to formulate economic guidelines for strategic planning in this field. This paper thus complements the studies cited above by approaching the problem more from the point of view of the economic methodology and going on to try to identify the key factors that influence the economics of the various measures used to control this disease. This means leaving aside some of the important issues which are often discussed along with the economic aspects, such as land-use issues, and how community participation and public/private good considerations can influence costs and sustainability. Again, in order to fit within its terms of reference, the paper does not include detailed discussion and comparison of the costs and sustainability of various methods of controlling tsetse - although more work on this subject is urgently needed. This paper also does not deal directly with the options for controlling sleeping sickness, which in many cases is not a major factor in the areas being studied. The reader is referred to WHO (1998), Cattand, Jannin and Lucas (2001), and Shaw and Cattand (2001) for background on the economics of controlling sleeping sickness. There are three main areas that need to be addressed:

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