nep-ara New Economics Papers
on MENA - Middle East and North Africa
Issue of 2018‒03‒05
fourteen papers chosen by
Paul Makdissi
Université d’Ottawa

  1. A partial equilibrium analysis of India's agricultural export to GCC: looking beyond the status quo(2009-2015) By Ayyub, Salahuddin; Manral, Prerana
  2. Quantifying Uncertainty and Identifying its Impacts on the Turkish Economy By Evren Erdogan Cosar; Saygýn Sahinoz
  3. Forecasting Industrial Production and Inflation in Turkey with Factor Models By Mahmut Gunay
  4. Deconstructing European appeasement of dictatorship in Turkey: Policy change is required urgently By Ugur, Mehmet
  5. Multivariate Filter for Estimating Potential Output and Output Gap in Turkey By Selen Andic
  6. Turkey and the OIC: Greater Economic Cooperation, Opportunities and Challenges By Bağış, Bilal; Yurtseven, Çağlar
  7. Sanctions and the Shadow Economy: Empirical Evidence from Iranian Provinces By Mohammad Reza Farzanegan; Bernd Hayo
  8. A Revised Direct Output Gap Measure for the Turkish Economy By Evren Erdogan Cosar
  9. OPEC in the News By Plante, Michael D.
  10. Israel’s Immigration Story: Winners and Losers By Assaf Razin
  11. Import Demand Function for Turkey By Olcay Yucel Culha; Okan Eren; Ferya Ogunc
  12. Jordan; Technical Assistance Report-Public Investment Management Assessment (PIMA) By International Monetary Fund
  13. فهم الشباب في البلدان العربية By Harkat, Tahar; Driouchi, Ahmed
  14. XV. ve XIX. Yüzyıllar Arasında Osmanlı Para Vakıfları ve Modern Finans Kurumlarının Karşılaştırılması By Korkut, Cem; Bulut, Mehmet

  1. By: Ayyub, Salahuddin; Manral, Prerana
    Abstract: GCC fulfills 60 to 90 percent of its food demand through imports. Currently GCC imports 12 percent of its Agriculture products from India. An effort has been made in this paper to understand the trend and pattern of India’s Agriculture export to GCC with the help of Descriptive Statistics and to find out the impact of tariff reduction on India’s agriculture export to GCC Partial Equilibrium Analysis (Smart Analysis) has been used and BRCA has been used to find out the agriculture products where India has comparative advantage in GCC import market and to make a comparative analysis of GCC countries as a destination of India’s agriculture export. In case of zero tariff in GCC, India’s agriculture export will see highest growth in Saudi Arabia ($106 Million) followed by UAE ($89 Million), Kuwait ($40 Million), Qatar ($23 Million), Oman ($22 Million) and Bahrain ($6 Million). Out of 231 agriculture products, India has highest average number of products with BRCA in Qatar (76), followed by Oman (74), Kuwait (67), Bahrain (59), UAE (52) and Saudi Arabia (28).
    Keywords: GCC, India, Smart Analysis, RCA
    JEL: F1 F17 Q1
    Date: 2017–07
  2. By: Evren Erdogan Cosar; Saygýn Sahinoz
    Abstract: In this study, firstly, we construct indices reflecting the financial uncertainty and the uncertainty perception of different agents such as consumers, firms and forecasters. Then, we develop an index of Economic Policy Uncertainty based on newspaper coverage frequency. In a dynamic factor model framework, we combine these indices to obtain an aggregate measure of economic uncertainty for the Turkish economy. Finally, by using this measure, we investigate the impact of uncertainty on economic activity via vector autoregression models. Empirical evidence shows that uncertainty has adverse impacts on economic growth, consumption and investment in Turkey. The impacts typically take two to three quarters to reach the maximum effect and the most severe effects of uncertainty are observed on investment.
    Keywords: Uncertainty, Business cycle, Turkey
    JEL: C22 C52 D81 E32
    Date: 2018
  3. By: Mahmut Gunay
    Abstract: In this paper, industrial production growth and core inflation are forecasted using a large number of domestic and international indicators. Two methods are employed, factor models and forecast combination, to deal with the curse of dimensionality problem stemming from the availability of ever growing data sets. A comprehensive analysis is carried out to understand the sensitivity of the forecast performance of factor models to various modelling choices. In this respect, effects of factor extraction method, number of factors, data aggregation level and forecast equation type on the forecasting performance are analyzed. Moreover, the effect of using certain data blocks such as European Union variables and interest rates on the forecasting performance is evaluated as well. Out-of-sample forecasting exercise is conducted for two consecutive periods to assess the stability of the forecasting performance. Results show that best performing specifications depend on the type of the variable that one wants to forecast, the forecast horizon and the sample period used to evaluate the out-of-sample forecasting performance. Factor models perform better than the combination of bi-variate forecasts.
    Keywords: Forecasting, Factor models, Principal component
    JEL: E37 C53
    Date: 2018
  4. By: Ugur, Mehmet
    Abstract: The Turkish ruling elite, led by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) and its chief Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has been consolidating the most oppressive regime that Europe has witnessed since World War II. The consolidation has unfolded under the gaze of European governments and institutions. To make the case for a radical change in the policy stance, I locate the failure of the European elites to take a credible stance against rising authoritarianism within the corrosive nature of the neo-liberal world order. Then I highlight the gross violations that the Turkish regime has committed domestically and against its neighbours. Finally, I distil a number of policy implications that require urgent action on the part of European governments and institutions, indicating that the European governments and institutions are likely to act only if the European civil society act as a last line of defence in support of human rights, democracy and accountability in Europe and beyond.
    Keywords: dictatorship; Turkey; policy Change
    Date: 2018–02–20
  5. By: Selen Andic
    Abstract: This paper estimates the potential output and output gap in Turkey using a multivariate filter. The filter employed links the output gap to slack in the labor market and changes in inflation. Additionally, it produces the output gap taking into account some macroeconomic variables. Though end-of-sample problem remains an issue, results show that the output gap estimates provided by the multivariate filter have a stronger relationship with inflation and are subject to smaller revisions compared to the Hodrick-Prescott filter.
    Keywords: Filter, Potential growth, Output gap, Turkey
    JEL: C51 E32 O40
    Date: 2018
  6. By: Bağış, Bilal; Yurtseven, Çağlar
    Abstract: This paper aims to analyze potential future areas of greater cooperation between Turkey and the other OIC member economies. It then provides some specific policy recommendations. In particular, the paper aims to contribute to economic policymaking efforts in terms of the potential future areas of increased cooperation. Broadly speaking, the Muslim world has immense savings-holding accumulated over the past few decades. Human and physical capital potentials are extremely high. Yet, there are also huge economic disparities and extremely diverse demographic dynamics. This paper is built on the idea that a crucial strategy to boost economic development and social prosperity is an intense economic, financial and strategic integraton of the OIC members. In particular, countries with common historical, cultural and even religious backgrounds have much to gain from such specific collaboration efforts. In that line, this paper deals with opportunities and challenges regarding the strategic position of Turkey. It focuses on sectors in which Turkey has a comparative advantage within the OIC league. It further analyzes the reasons Turkey and the other OIC economies must cooperate and build stronger economic ties. The paper suggests that such a modern economic cooperation or a strategic union that is strengthened by historical, social and cultural roots is both inevitable and to the benefit of all parties.
    Keywords: OIC, Turkey, International Trade, Economic Cooperation, Comparative Advantage
    JEL: F2 F4 F5 O1 O3
    Date: 2017–05
  7. By: Mohammad Reza Farzanegan (University of Marburg); Bernd Hayo (University of Marburg)
    Abstract: Using Iranian-province-level data from 2001–2013, this study finds that the international sanctions of 2012/2013 had a significantly stronger negative impact on the growth rate of the shadow economy than they did on the official GDP growth rate. Thus, the international sanctions on Iran have damaged the informal economy even more than the formal economy.
    Keywords: shadow economy, sanctions, Iran
    JEL: F51 E26 O17
    Date: 2018
  8. By: Evren Erdogan Cosar
    Abstract: In the calculation of the output gap, which is an unobservable variable, filtering techniques, production function and structural models are used in general. However, the output gap estimates obtained using these methods may be subject to revisions due to the end-of-sample and model parameter revisions. To reduce the uncertainties in output gap estimates, it is important to follow indicators which are not predicted and contain information about the cyclical position of the economy. In this study we revised the direct output gap measure to cover the 2005-2017 period by including new cyclical indicators representing the different sectors of the economy. The results show that the revisions in the calculated output gap indicator are lower than the output gap series calculated by filter-based methods and that the revised output gap indicator contains more information about the phase of inflation and growth cycles than the old series. In addition, the calculated output gap indicators suggests that economic activity in Turkey was below its potential in the period 2016Q1-2017Q1 and 2009-2010.
    Keywords: Output gap, Growth cycles, Indexation and weighting
    JEL: E32 C43
    Date: 2018
  9. By: Plante, Michael D. (Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas)
    Abstract: This paper introduces a newspaper article count index related to OPEC that rises in response to important OPEC meetings and events connected with OPEC production levels. I use this index to measure how interest in OPEC varies over time and investigate how oil price volatility behaves when the index unexpectedly changes. I find that unexpected increases in the newspaper index are strongly associated with higher levels of oil price volatility, both realized and implied. In some cases, interest levels and price volatility appear to be driven by the OPEC event itself, such as the Iraq invasion of Kuwait. In other cases, such as the oil price collapses in late 2008 and late 2014, price volatility and interest levels in an OPEC event appear to be responding endogenously to developments in the oil market or broader economy. The newspaper index is highly correlated with Google search volume data on OPEC, an alternative measure of the amount of attention paid to OPEC events.
    Keywords: Oil price volatility; OPEC; attention; Google search activity
    JEL: C32 D80 G12 Q43
    Date: 2018–02–01
  10. By: Assaf Razin
    Abstract: The exodus of Soviet Jews to Israel in the 1990s was a unique event. The immigration wave was distinctive for its large high skilled cohort, and its quick integration into the domestic labor market. Immigration also changed the entire economic landscape: it raised productivity, underpinned by the information technological surge, and had significant impact on income inequality. The extraordinary experience of Israel, which has received three quarter million migrants from the Former Soviet Union within a short time, is also relevant for the current debate about winners and losers from immigration. This paper provides a rigorous explanation for a possible link between the immigration wave and the changed level of redistribution in Israel’s welfare state.
    JEL: F2 H0
    Date: 2018–02
  11. By: Olcay Yucel Culha; Okan Eren; Ferya Ogunc
    Abstract: This study aims to revisit the import demand function for Turkey using the updated data and to examine the evolution of income and price elasticities over time. In this respect, a demand function is estimated for the total imports and its subcomponents separately, and the corresponding time varying elasticities are obtained by applying the method of Kalman filter between 2003 and 2017. Using newly published national income series (2009=100), this study finds that the growth of total imports is significantly explained by income and relative price changes. It seems that the income and expenditure elasticities have decreased over time, both in total imports and in sub-components. The decline in income elasticity is mainly due to the decrease in the consumption-expenditure elasticity. The relative price elasticity of imports of consumption and investment goods showed a limited fall over time, while the relative price elasticity of imports of intermediate goods increased significantly.
    Keywords: Import demand, Income elasticity, Relative price elasticity, Kalman filter, Turkish economy
    JEL: C13 C51 F17
    Date: 2018
  12. By: International Monetary Fund
    Abstract: Jordan’s public finances have deteriorated since the mid-2000s, resulting in a significant reduction in public investment. In response to several negative external shocks, notably the Iraq and Syria crises and the 2008 global financial crisis, the government has reduced public investment and stepped up the use of public-private partnerships (PPPs). Capital expenditure as a share of total expenditure for the general government decreased from around 7 percent of GDP in the early 2000s to around 4 percent of GDP in the years following the 2008 global financial crisis. Consequently, Jordan’s public capital stock stood at 77 percent of GDP in 2015, compared to 140 percent of GDP in 1990, and the capital stock per capita in 2015 was lower than those of peer countries with similar income levels.
    Keywords: Jordan;Middle East;
    Date: 2017–12–18
  13. By: Harkat, Tahar; Driouchi, Ahmed
    Abstract: نبذة مختصرة : يقدم هذا البحث تقرير توليفي للعديد من المساهمات السابقة(Driouchi & Harkat, 2017a; 2017b; 2017c; 2017d; 2017e; Harkat, Driouchi, & Achehboune, 2016a; 2016b; Harkat & Driouchi, 2017)، وتهدف إلى تحليل حالة الشباب في الاقتصادات العربية. تشير النتائج إلى أن القيم، والطريقة التي تنظر بها المرأة بوصفها لاعبا في الاقتصاد لم تتغير بين الأجيال. ولكن فيما يتعلق بسمات العمل، فقد تغيرن بشكل ملحوظ. وفيما يتعلق بالتهديدات االقتصادية الكلية، فإنها ملحوظة من طرف شباب البلدان العربية التي ليست عضوا في مجلس التعاون الخليجي أكثر من شباب البلدان التي تنتمي إلى هذا المجلس. وتبين الأقسام الأربعة المتبقية أثر التعليم المهني والتعليم العام على متغيرات الاقتصاد الكلي والمتغيرات الاجتماعية، حالة ومحددات بطالة الشباب، حالة ومحددات الشباب الغير الملتحقين بالتعليم، وليس في العمل، وليس في التدريب (NEETs)، وتأثير العائد الديمغرافي على هذه الفئة الاخيرة. وتشير النتائج التجريبية إلى أن وضع الشباب وتأثيرهما يختلفان عن كل اقتصاد عربي إلى آخر.
    Keywords: الدول العربية، الشباب العربي، البطالة، التعليم، العائد الديمغرافي، السياسات.
    JEL: I25 I32 J11 J13 J68 M54 O11
    Date: 2018–01–24
  14. By: Korkut, Cem; Bulut, Mehmet
    Abstract: Most of the services provided by modern states to their citizens today were provided by the waqfs during the Ottoman period. The fact that the influence of Islamic religion on the social life was high was one of the most important factors driving people to establish the waqfs. The waqfs founded by philanthropists financed such social needs as religious services, education and infrastructure. The cash waqfs (CWs) were one of the waqf types that financed the needs of the society. The CWs whose capital was cash money provided financial sources to entrepreneurs who were in need of cash according to Islamic methods. The CWs continued to function until the last period of the Ottomans. That the Ottomans used CWs to carry out the functions of the modern financial institutions of Europe is important to understand the Ottoman economic and financial mentality. By using the primary sources, this study aims to analyze the Ottoman economic mentality through studying CWs. In addition, the financial institutions operating in Europe in the same Günümüzde modern devletler tarafından vatandaşlara sağlanan çoğu hizmetler, Osmanlı döneminde vakıflar tarafından sağlanıyordu. İslâm dininin toplumsal hayat üzerindeki etkisinin yüksek olması insanları vakıf kurmaya iten önemli etkenlerin başında geliyordu. Hayırseverler tarafından kurulan vakıflar, dini hizmetler, eğitim, altyapı vb. toplumsal ihtiyaçları finanse etmekteydi. Para vakıfları, toplumun ihtiyaçlarını finanse eden vakıf türlerinden birisidir. Sermayesi nakit paradan oluşan bu vakıflar ihtiyacı olan girişimcilere İslâmî usullere göre finansman sağlamıştır. Para vakıfları Osmanlıların son dönemlerine kadar işleyişini devam ettiren kurumlar olmuştur. Osmanlıların, aynı dönemde Avrupa’daki modern finansal kurumların gelişmesine karşı para vakıfları ile bu kurumların işlevlerini yerine getirmesi, Osmanlı iktisadi ve finansal zihniyetini anlamak açısından önemlidir. Bu çalışmanın amacı birincil kaynaklarından incelenen para vakıfları ile Osmanlı iktisadi zihniyetini analiz etmektir. Ayrıca aynı dönemde faaliyet gösteren ve para vakıfları ile çağdaş olarak Avrupa’da faaliyet gösteren finansal kurumlar da incelenecek ve iktisadi zihniyetler arasında karşılaştırma yapılmaya çalışılacaktır.
    Keywords: cash waqfs, the economic mentality of Ottomans, Rumelia, modern financial institutions, Islamic economics and finance, para vakıfları, Osmanlı iktisadi zihniyeti, Rumeli, modern finans kurumları, İslam iktisadı ve finansı
    JEL: B12 B15 G23 N23 N25
    Date: 2017–12–12

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