Mechanization process of the sugar cane harvest and its direct and indirect impact over the employment in Brazil and in its 5 macro regions

Authors:

Joaquim J.M. Guilhoto – University of São Paulo

Alexandre L. Mendonça de Barros – University of São Paulo

Marta C. Marjotta-Maistro – University of São Paulo

Márcia Istake – State University of Maringá

Abstract: One of the main concerns about the mechanization process of the sugar cane harvest is its direct and indirect impact over the employment. To study such an impact, it was: a) constructed an interregional input-output model, for the Brazilian economy for 1997, at the level of its 5 macro regions, with specific details for the sugar cane, alcohol, and sugar sectors; b) estimated the employment level, for the sectors in the model, by the qualification level of the workforce, i.e., by years of study (less than 1 year, 1 to 3 years, 4 to 7 years, 8 to 10 years, 11 to 14 years, and greater than 15 years); c) construct 3 possible scenarios for the mechanization process. The results are rather stressing, from the estimated 510,651 people working in the sugar cane harvest in 1997, one has that, depending on the scenario being considered, the total workforce will be reduced somewhere between 243,211 to 316,288 people, mainly in the lower qualification levels and in the Northeast and Southeast regions. This also has an impact over the employment generate indirectly, which is estimated through the use of the interregional input-output model constructed.

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