In 1997, the Brazilian government approved the Law 9478/97, which has established new criteria for the distribution of oil royalties among municipalities and expanded the possibilities of using these resources in social areas. The aim of this paper is to investigate empirically whether the royalties distributed under this law contributed to the improvement of social indicators of the municipalities relative to the national average in the period 2000 to 2007. We used the Social Development Index Firjan (IFDM) and its three components: IFDM - Education, IFDM - Health and IFDM - Employment & Income as a measure of social development. The results show that the oil revenues produced no significant impacts on social indicators of health and education of municipalities benefited, but, surprisingly, generated negative effects on their formal sector work.
oil rents; royalties; regional development; social indicators