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Exploring spatial convergence of Maghreb regional areas: An application of a Markov chains approach

Author

Listed:
  • Alexandra Schaffar

    () (Université de Toulon, Léad (France))

  • Nicolas Péridy

    () (Université de Toulon, Léad (France))

Abstract

This paper explores the real convergence process of 360 regional areas in Maghreb countries using a non-parametric approach based on classical and spatial Markov chains. This approach investigates the long-term spatial associations between regional units. The advantage of this method is that is does not require the use of control variables which are very often non available at a disaggregated geographical level. We show that there is a trend of regional convergence of GDP per capita in Mena regions. However, this process is very slow and there is an important spatial clustering movement. We also show that although almost 75% of the regional areas seem to converge towards a higher GDP per capita level in the stationary state, 25% are trapped in low development trends. These results suggest that the economic performance of a given region strongly depends of that of its neighbor regions. This in turn implies reconsidering regional development policies within these countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexandra Schaffar & Nicolas Péridy, 2015. "Exploring spatial convergence of Maghreb regional areas: An application of a Markov chains approach," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 35(3), pages 1848-1855.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-15-00453
    as

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    File URL: http://www.accessecon.com/Pubs/EB/2015/Volume35/EB-15-V35-I3-P188.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Quah, Danny T., 1996. "Regional convergence clusters across Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 951-958, April.
    2. Nicolas Péridy & Mohamed Hazem & Marc Brunetto, 2013. "Some new insights into real convergence in MENA countries’ regional areas: a spatial econometric analysis," Economics and Business Letters, Oviedo University Press, vol. 2(4), pages 150-160.
    3. Costas Megir & Danny Quah, 1996. "Regional Convergence Clusters Across Europe," CEP Discussion Papers dp0274, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    4. Sergio Rey & Brett Montouri, 1999. "US Regional Income Convergence: A Spatial Econometric Perspective," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(2), pages 143-156.
    5. Hakim Hammouda & Stephen Karingi & Angelica Njuguna & Mustapha Jallab, 2009. "Why Doesn’t Regional Integration Improve Income Convergence in Africa?," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 21(2), pages 291-330.
    6. Reinhold Kosfeld & Jorgen Lauridsen, 2004. "Dynamic spatial modelling of regional convergence processes," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 29(4), pages 705-722, December.
    7. Quah, Danny, 1996. "Regional Convergence Clusters Across Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 1286, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    8. Soundararajan, Pushparaj, 2013. "Regional income convergence in India: A Bayesian Spatial Durbin Model approach," MPRA Paper 44744, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Maghreb countries; convergence; regional analysis; Markov chains; spatial analysis;

    JEL classification:

    • R1 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics
    • C6 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling

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