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The Economics of the Arab Spring

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  • Malik, Adeel
  • Awadallah, Bassem
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    Abstract

    A singular failure of the Arab world is the absence of a private sector that is independent, competitive, and integrated with global markets. This paper argues that private sector development is both a political and regional challenge. In so far as the private sector generates incomes that are independent of the rent streams controlled by the state, it can pose a direct political challenge. It is also a regional challenge, since fragmented markets deny scale economies to firms and entrench the power of insiders. We argue that overcoming regional economic barriers constitutes the single most important collective action problem facing the region since the fall of Ottoman Empire.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal World Development.

    Volume (Year): 45 (2013)
    Issue (Month): C ()
    Pages: 296-313

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:45:y:2013:i:c:p:296-313

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/worlddev

    Related research

    Keywords: Arab spring; private sector; fragmentation; protectionism;

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    1. World Bank, 2010. "World Development Indicators 2010," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 4373, October.
    2. Dennis, Allen, 2006. "The impact of regional trade agreements and trade facilitation in the Middle East and North Africa region," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3837, The World Bank.
    3. Caselli, Francesco & Feyrer, James, 2005. "The Marginal Product of Capital," CEPR Discussion Papers 5203, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Henry,Clement Moore & Springborg,Robert, 2010. "Globalization and the Politics of Development in the Middle East," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521737449, April.
    5. Nunn, Nathan, 2008. "The Long-Term Effects of Africa's Slave Trades," Scholarly Articles 3710252, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    6. Tarik M. Yousef, 2004. "Development, Growth and Policy Reform in the Middle East and North Africa since 1950," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(3), pages 91-115, Summer.
    7. Julia Devlin & Peter Yee, 2005. "Trade Logistics in Developing Countries: The Case of the Middle East and North Africa," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(3), pages 435-456, 03.
    8. Henry,Clement Moore & Springborg,Robert, 2010. "Globalization and the Politics of Development in the Middle East," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521519397, April.
    9. Robinson, James A., 2010. "Elites and Institutional Persistence," Working Paper Series wp2010-85, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    10. Harrigan, Jane, 2011. "The Political Economy of Aid Flows to North Africa," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    11. World Bank, 2004. "Unlocking the Employment Potential in the Middle East and North Africa : Toward a New Social Contract," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15011, October.
    12. Tarik Yousef & Hassan Al-Atrash, 2000. "Intra-Arab Trade," IMF Working Papers 00/10, International Monetary Fund.
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