nep-ara New Economics Papers
on MENA - Middle East and North Africa
Issue of 2015‒11‒21
five papers chosen by
Paul Makdissi
Université d’Ottawa

  1. Unhappy development : dissatisfaction with life in the wake of the Arab spring By Arampatzi,Efstratia; Burger,Martijn; Ianchovichina,Elena; Röhricht,Tina; Veenhoven,Ruut
  2. Policy changes in times of crisis: Evidence from the Arab Spatial Policy Analyzer: By Bordignon, Jacopo; Breisinger, Clemens
  3. Socioeconomic Inequalities in Infant Mortality in Egypt: Analyzing Trends between 1995 and 2014 By Sharaf, Mesbah; Rashad, Ahmed
  4. Estimating the Economic Effects of Deregulation: Evidence from the Turkish Airline Industry By Tamer Cetin; Kadir Y. Eryigit
  5. Past and Current Paths to European Union Accession: Romania and Turkey a Comparative Approach By Dogaru, Tatiana - Camelia

  1. By: Arampatzi,Efstratia; Burger,Martijn; Ianchovichina,Elena; Röhricht,Tina; Veenhoven,Ruut
    Abstract: Despite progress in economic and social development in the 2000s, there was an increasing dissatisfaction with life among the population of many developing Arab countries. At the end of the decade, these countries ranked among the least happy economies in the world?a situation that fits the so-called ?unhappy development? paradox. The paradox is defined as declining levels of happiness at a time of moderate-to-rapid economic development. This paper empirically tests the strength of association of a range of objective and subjective factors with life evaluation in the Middle East and North Africa region in the years immediately preceding the Arab Spring uprisings (2009?10). The findings suggest a significant, negative association between life satisfaction levels in the region during this period and each of the main perceived reasons for the 2011 uprisings?dissatisfaction with the standard of living, poor labor market conditions, and corruption.
    Keywords: Labor Markets,Disease Control&Prevention,Population Policies,Poverty Monitoring&Analysis,Public Sector Corruption&Anticorruption Measures
    Date: 2015–11–12
  2. By: Bordignon, Jacopo; Breisinger, Clemens
    Abstract: The paper introduces and demonstrates different uses of the Arab Spatial Policy Analyzer (ASPA), a new online policy database for the analysis of food and nutrition security in the Middle East and North Africa region. Using the ASPA database, we assess the nature of policy activity throughout the Arab region, specifically during the 2008 global food price crisis and the 2011 social uprisings. The ASPA is a means for identifying broadly those policy areas where governments are active and can help analysts, researchers, and decisionmakers discern what policy actions governments are undertaking to bring about stability and prosperity for their people. The ASPA database draws from a variety of sources: country reports of the Economist Intelligence Unit; datasets of the World Bank Food Price Crisis Observatory, the FAO Food and Agriculture Policy Decision Analysis Tool, and FAOLEX Legal Office; and the Global Agriculture Information Network reports of the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agriculture Service. The database has several distinct features when compared to other policy monitoring tools, including a novel policy classification system and policy directions indicating either an increasing or decreasing value for determinate policy instruments—for example, an increase in food subsidies. We find that in times of crisis governments in the Middle East and North Africa region focus on “firefighting†policies that neglect both fiscal prudence and interventions with more impact, such as investments in infrastructure and targeted social protection measures.
    Keywords: food security, nutrition security, agricultural policies, food prices, agricultural growth, conflict, arab spring, social protection,
    Date: 2015
  3. By: Sharaf, Mesbah (University of Alberta, Department of Economics); Rashad, Ahmed (Philipps University Marburg)
    Abstract: This paper examines the trends in the socio-economic inequalities of infant mortality rates in Egypt during the period 1995-2014, using repeated cross sectional data from the National Demographic and Health Survey. A multivariate logistic regression model, concentration curves, and concentration indices are used to examine the demographic and socio-economic correlates of infant mortality, and how the degree of socio-economic disparities in child mortality rates has evolved over time. We find a significant drop in infant mortality rates from 63 deaths per 1000 live births in 1995 to 22 deaths per 1000 live births in 2014. Results show an inverse association between infant mortality rates and living standard measures, with the poor bearing the largest burden of early child mortality. Though the estimated concentration indices show a decline in the degree of socio-economic inequality in child mortality rates over time, infant mortality rate among the poor remains twice the rate of the richest wealth quintile. Nonetheless, this decline in the degree of socio-economic inequality in child mortality rates was not supported by the results of the multivariate logistic regression model. Results of the logistic model show higher odds of infant mortality among rural households, children who are twins, households with risky birth intervals. No statistically significant association was found between infant mortality and access to safe water, gender, and mothers' education. Infant mortality was negatively associated with household wealth, receiving a regular health care during pregnancy by mothers, having more than two under- five children. By identifying the correlates of child mortality, the findings of this paper inform intervention measures that aim at reducing child mortality rates and socio-economic inequalities in Egypt.
    Keywords: Infant Mortality; Inequality; Trend Analysis; Millennium Development Goals; Egypt
    JEL: I14 I15
    Date: 2015–11–16
  4. By: Tamer Cetin (Yildiz Technical University); Kadir Y. Eryigit (Uludag University)
    Abstract: This paper mainly studies the effect of deregulation on prices and quantity. For this aim, we employ cointegration methodology with structural breaks to empirically investigate the simultaneous relationship between deregulation, ticket prices, and the number of passengers in the Turkish airline industry. The findings confirm that deregulation increases quantity and decreases prices through accessibility to air transport service and actual competition, respectively. Also, structural breaks suggest that deregulation of prices and entry into the market has remarkable effect on the change in ticket prices and the number of passengers.
    Keywords: Deregulation, Airlines, Cointegration, Structural Breaks.
    JEL: L43 L93 C22
    Date: 2015–11
  5. By: Dogaru, Tatiana - Camelia
    Abstract: Several decades ago, leaders of six European countries with an inclusive vision of Europe and strong courage started a construction without precedent, the European Union. The remarkable construction evolved not only concerning the number of the Member States, but also in terms of institutional and functional development. Nowadays, the European Union is one of the most important changing factor concerning the governance and the policy-making process at European level and not only, and there is no doubt that the EU will continue to grow as an increasing number of countries express interest in membership. This paper reveals in a comparative perspective the path to European Union Accession, and is based on documentary analysis, using strategy-level documents of the countries and the Progress Reports the European Commission provided during the past enlargement.
    Keywords: Europeanization, EU Accession process, enlargement
    JEL: D7 D78 H1 H12 H77
    Date: 2015–05

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