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Development despite Modest Growth in the Middle East

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  • Murshed Syed Mansoob

    (Institute of Social Studies and University of Birmingham)

Abstract

The Middle Eastern region is a major supplier of the world's energy. It is also characterised by conflict, and is the focus of global geo-political interest both because of oil and the volatile nature of disputes in the region, which are perceived to have far reaching global security implications. Would we expect such a region to prosper? On the one hand, the answer should be affirmative on account of natural resource wealth, but on the other hand it could be negative due to the presence of conflict and the potential resource rent mismanagement. The actual record is somewhere in the middle. I argue that the region has made substantial progress in human development in spite of modest growth rates, which is related to the region's cultural heritage with a low tolerance for poverty and inequality. Its outcome based institutional development is not unimpressive, which bodes well for long-term growth prospects. Additionally, recent oil rents have not been mismanaged. More, however, needs to be done to foster economic diversification and diminish dependence on natural resources.

Suggested Citation

  • Murshed Syed Mansoob, 2008. "Development despite Modest Growth in the Middle East," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 4(3), pages 1-31, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:rmeecf:v:4:y:2008:i:3:n:1
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Noland Marcus, 2008. "Explaining Middle Eastern Political Authoritarianism I: The Level of Democracy," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 1-30, January.
    2. Rodrik, Dani, 1999. "Where Did All the Growth Go? External Shocks, Social Conflict, and Growth Collapses," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 4(4), pages 385-412, December.
    3. Samir Makdisi,Zeki Fattah and Imed Limam, "undated". "Determinants of Growth in the Mena Countries," API-Working Paper Series 0301, Arab Planning Institute - Kuwait, Information Center.
    4. Mustapha Kamel Nabli & Marie-Ange Véganzonès-Varoudakis, 2007. "Reform complementarities and economic growth in the Middle East and North Africa," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(1), pages 17-54.
    5. Noland Marcus, 2008. "Explaining Middle Eastern Political Authoritarianism II: Liberalizing Transitions," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 31-40, January.
    6. Xavier Sala-i-Martín & Elsa V. Artadi, 2003. "Economic growth and investment in the Arab world," Economics Working Papers 683, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
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