nep-ara New Economics Papers
on Arab World
Issue of 2010‒09‒11
seven papers chosen by
Quentin Wodon
World Bank

  1. On The Influence of Oil Prices on Stock Markets: Evidence from Panel Analysis in GCC Countries By Mohamed El Hedi Arouri; Christophe Rault
  2. Women's rights in Turkey as gauge of its European vocation: The impact of ‘EU-niversal values’ By Meltem Müftüler-Baç, Nora Fisher Onar
  3. Have Foreign Banks Contributed to the Spread of the Global Financial Crisis to Saudi Arabia? By Mahmoud Haddad; Sam Hakim
  4. Ethnic Conflict and Job Separations By Sami H. Miaari; Asaf Zussman; Noam Zussman
  5. Political Instrumentalisation of Islam, Persistent Autocracies, and Obscurantist Deadlock By Jean-Philippe Platteau
  6. Nigeria: Mapping the Shari`a Movement By Lubeck, Paul M
  7. Jordan: A Refugee Haven By Geraldine Chatelard

  1. By: Mohamed El Hedi Arouri (Université d’Orléans); Christophe Rault
    Abstract: This paper implements recent bootstrap panel cointegration techniques and seemingly unrelated regression (SUR) methods to investigate the existence of a long-run relationship between oil prices and Gulf Corporation Countries (GCC) stock markets. Since GCC countries are major world energy market players, their stock markets are likely to be susceptible to oil price shocks. Using two different (weekly and monthly) datasets covering respectively the periods from 7 June 2005 to 21 October 2008, and from January 1996 to December 2007, our investigation shows that there is evidence for cointegration of oil prices and stock markets in GCC countries, while the SUR results indicate that oil price increases have a positive impact on stock prices, except in Saudi Arabia.
    Date: 2010–08
  2. By: Meltem Müftüler-Baç, Nora Fisher Onar
    Abstract: It is often assumed that Turkey’s chance of accession to the EU would be enhanced were the European project to move in an inclusive, cosmopolitan direction. However, the inclusion of women’s rights and post-sexual revolution sexuality in the battery of ‘EU-niversal’ values could still represent an obstacle from the perspective of pro-religious actors in Turkey. This paper examines to what extent Turkish views converge with those expressed in the EU/Europe with regard to two recent debates over criminalisation of adultery, and veiling in public institutions. Based on extensive primary research, it shows that whilst secularists of all ideological backgrounds agree with the EU/European position, there is some ambivalence in Islamist perspectives. This was evident only in a limited fashion with the adultery debate. However, European Court of Human Rights verdicts upholding a secularist ban on veiling engendered deep disappointment in many Islamists, spurring some to conclude that ‘EU-niversal’ and Islamic values are incompatible. The ongoing tension between the religious actors and the secularists is a battle fought over women’s bodies. That is why, the women question in Turkey is a good yardstick to measure the extent to which Turkey has embraced EU-niversal values.
    Keywords: democratization; European citizenship; European identity; fundamental/human rights; gender policy
    Date: 2010–05–15
  3. By: Mahmoud Haddad (University of Tennessee-Martin, College of Business And Public Affairs); Sam Hakim
    Abstract: We analyze the role of domestic and foreign banks in Saudi Arabia during the latest financial crisis that has ravaged the world since 2007. The study is based on the growth rate in market share of the credit extended by each bank and investors’ perception about the risk exposure of this financial institution. We distinguish between purely domestic banks and institutions with joint ownership (local and foreign shareholders). While there is a suspicion that partly owned foreign banks are more risk exposed than their purely domestic counterparts, our findings suggest otherwise. Specifically we do not find evidence that foreign shareholders of Saudi banks, who suffered losses and liquidity problems in their home countries, cut credit in Saudi Arabia nor acted in a manner inconsistent with their domestic counterparts. As such, recommendations for a double standard in banking regulation are not supported by the evidence.
    Date: 2010–08
  4. By: Sami H. Miaari (European University Institute); Asaf Zussman (Hebrew University of Jerusalem); Noam Zussman (Bank of Israel)
    Abstract: We study the effect of the second Intifada, a violent conflict between Israel and its Palestinian neighbors which erupted in September 2000, and the ensuing riots of Arab citizens of Israel, on labor market outcomes of Arabs relative to those of Jewish Israelis. The analysis relies on a large matched employer-employee dataset, focusing on firms that in the pre-Intifada period hired both Arabs and Jews. Our analysis demonstrates that until September 2000 Arab workers had a lower rate of job separation than their Jewish peers and that this differential was significantly reduced after the outbreak of the Intifada. We argue that the most likely explanation for this pattern is increased anti-Arab discrimination among Jews.
    Keywords: Ethnic Conflict, Job Separation, Israel, Arabs, Intifada
    JEL: H56 J15 J63 J71
    Date: 2010–05
  5. By: Jean-Philippe Platteau
    Abstract: The empirical literature has established a strong link between the fact of being a Muslim-dominated country and indicators of political performance and democracy. This suggests the possible existence of a relation between religion, Islam in this instance, and societal characteristics. Bernard Lewis and others have actually argued the case for such a relation, pointing to aspects of the Islamic religion and culture that make the advent of democracy especially difficult. These arguments fall into the general idea of the Clash of civilisations put forward by Samuel Huntington. In this paper, we discuss this sort of argument and show that there is a systematic misconception about the true nature of the relationship between Islam and politics: far from being merged into the religious realm, politics tends to dominate religion. Because of the particular characteristics of Is-lam, namely, the lack of a centralised religious authority structure and the great variability of interpretations of the Islamic law, there is a risk of an obscurantist deadlock in the form of a vicious process whereby both the ruler and his political opponents try to outbid each other by using the religious idiom. This risk looms particularly large in crisis situations accentuated by international factors.
    Date: 2010–04–15
  6. By: Lubeck, Paul M
    Keywords: Nigeria, Shari`a, Muslim, politics, africa
    Date: 2010–07–23
  7. By: Geraldine Chatelard (IFPO - Institut Français du Proche-Orient - MIN AFF ETRANG - CNRS : USR3135)
    Abstract: Migration to, from, and across Jordan since the Palestinian exodus of 1948 has played a key role in the country's politics, economy, and society. These movements have several underlying, interacting patterns. The main ones are connected to regional geopolitics, the fluctuations of the oil economy in the Persian Gulf, and efforts by the kingdom's Hashemite monarchy to ensure its own stability. Jordan is a case in point for how various forms of mobility can have strong political and economic implications, both domestically and regionally.
    Keywords: Jordan; Migration; Refugees; Economy; Politics
    Date: 2010

This nep-ara issue is ©2010 by Quentin Wodon. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.