nep-ara New Economics Papers
on MENA - Middle East and North Africa
Issue of 2018‒11‒12
nine papers chosen by
Paul Makdissi
Université d’Ottawa

  1. Labor Market and Institutional Drivers of Youth Irregular Migration: Evidence from the MENA Region By Dibeh, Ghassan; Fakih, Ali; Marrouch, Walid
  2. Reforming Fiscal Institutions in Resource-Rich Arab Economies: Policy Proposals By Mohaddes, Kamiar; Nugent, Jeffrey B.; Selim, Hoda
  3. Impact of sanctions on bilateral trade of agricultural products between Iran and MENA region and the EU countries By Faraji Dizaji, Sajjad; Jariani, Farzaneh; Najarzadeh, Reza
  4. Why It Matters What We Do: Arab Citizens' Perceptions of the European Union after the 2011 Uprisings By Thyen, Kressen
  5. Is there an economic case for legume-cereal rotation? A Case of Faba-beans in the Moroccan Wheat Based Production Systems By Yigezu, Y.A.; El-Shater, T.; Boughlala, M.; Bishaw, Z.; Niane, A.; Aw-Hassan, A.
  6. The Relation between Trade and Economic Growth A study of the case of Morocco By ABDELMOUNAIM LAHRECH
  7. Optimal Production Planning for Organic Agriculture Products: A Case Study of Turkey By HASAN AKYER; ZEHRA DURAK
  8. Multi-Criteria Decision Making Methods in Solid Waste Management: A case study By Hacer Güner Gören; Ay?egül I??ldar
  9. How Authoritarian Rulers Seek to Legitimise Repression: Framing Mass Killings in Egypt and Uzbekistan By Edel, Mirjam; Josua, Maria

  1. By: Dibeh, Ghassan; Fakih, Ali; Marrouch, Walid
    Abstract: Irregular migration became an alarming issue over the last decade for both developed and developing countries. A prevailing assumption in migration policy is that labor market and institutional characteristics play a crucial role in pushing people to leave their home countries in search for better life prospects. This paper examines this hypothesis using a unique dataset covering young people aged 15 to 29 from five major MENA countries from the year 2016. Using a probit model, the paper finds that labor market drivers (unemployment, job sector, social security, contract type) are of great importance for the decision to migrate irregularly amongst the youth in the MENA region and that the quality of institutions matters. In addition, the lack of wealth and economic opportunities enhance their willingness to engage in irregular migration.
    Keywords: Irregular Migration,Youth,Labor Markets,Institutions,Arab Spring
    JEL: J61 O17
    Date: 2018
  2. By: Mohaddes, Kamiar (University of Cambridge); Nugent, Jeffrey B. (University of Southern California); Selim, Hoda (Economic Research Forum)
    Abstract: This paper traces the evolution of fiscal institutions of Resource-Rich Arab Economies (RRAEs) over time since their pre-oil days, through the discovery of oil to their build-up of oil exports. It then identifies challenges faced by RRAEs and variations in their severity among the different countries over time. Finally, it articulates specific policy reforms, which, if implemented successfully, could help to overcome these challenges. In some cases, however, these policy proposals may give rise to important trade-offs that will have to be evaluated carefully in individual cases.
    Keywords: Fiscal policy; fiscal institutions; fiscal sustainability; public spending; efficiency; budget transparency; fiscal rules; volatility; oil curse; Arab World; oil exporters; Middle East; North Africa
    JEL: E02 E62 H50 H60 H61 O53
    Date: 2018–09–04
  3. By: Faraji Dizaji, Sajjad; Jariani, Farzaneh; Najarzadeh, Reza
    Abstract: This paper uses Generalized Method of Moments (GMM) estimation, gravity model, and dynamic panel data to evaluate the effect of the imposed sanctions against Iran on the value of the bilateral trade of agricultural products between Iran and its trading partners among the MENA and the EU countries during 2000 to 2014. The results show that the sanctions have had no effects on the trade flows between Iran and the MENA countries. However, they have meaningful impact on the Iran’s agricultural export to the EU countries, albeit they have caused a decrease in Iran’s agricultural import from this area. The annual precipitation in Iran, as a control variable, using in this paper has positive effects on the Iran’s agricultural export to the EU countries, nonetheless has negative effects on the Iran’s import from the mentioned countries. The overall country size of two trading partners’ variable has meaningful and direct effects on the mutual trade between Iran and the EU countries. According to the above outcomes, the imposed sanctions should be considered as an opportunity to the Iranian agricultural development and diversification of exports from the agriculture sector to the EU region as a wide range of non-oil products to compensate some of the costs on the Iranian economy caused by sanctions.
    Keywords: Bilateral Trade of Agricultural Products, Gravity Model, Generalized Method of Moments, Dynamic Panel Data, Index of Economic Freedom
    JEL: O13 O44
    Date: 2018–07–31
  4. By: Thyen, Kressen
    Abstract: In the Middle East and North Africa, EU foreign policy has tended to prioritise regime stability over democratisation. Existing research has argued that this could create anti-European sentiment in the respective populations. However, empirical evidence on the relationship between the EU's stance towards regime change and citizen attitudes remains rare. Focusing on Morocco and Egypt, this study uses a mixed-methods approach, combining qualitative case studies with original survey data to examine whether the EU's divergent responses to the 2011 uprisings in these two countries are mirrored in regime opponents' support for EU cooperation.
    Keywords: EU Mediterranean policy,Arab uprisings,external democratisation,foreign policy perceptions,survey research
    Date: 2018
  5. By: Yigezu, Y.A.; El-Shater, T.; Boughlala, M.; Bishaw, Z.; Niane, A.; Aw-Hassan, A.
    Abstract: While the impacts of legume-cereal rotations on soil health are well documented, the literature on their economic benefits, especially in dry areas is scanty. By applying the propensity score matching and endogenous switching regression methods to a nationally representative sample of 1,230 farm households from Morocco, this paper provided empirical evidence that the individual and combined adoption of improved varieties of faba-beans and legume-wheat rotations lead to higher yields, farm income and household consumption. Considering a two-year period, the simultaneous adoption of both faba-bean-wheat rotation and improved faba-bean varieties led to $875/ha (136%%) higher net returns relative to wheat mono-cropping. In the face of these very high benefits, high risk of losing faba-bean crops due to pests, diseases or drought explain the low adoption of rotation and improved varieties which are at 26% and 16% respectively. For reaping both the economic and environmental benefits of faba-beans, Morocco and other similar countries in the dry areas will need to invest on the development of varieties with better pest and diseases resistance, introduce crop insurance and different incentive systems, and create better access to extension and certified seed delivery services that induce wider adoption of improved varieties and legume-cereal rotations. Acknowledgement : Funding for this research was obtained from CRP-WHEAT and the EU-IFAD project on Enhanced small holder wheat cropping systems to improve food security under changing climate in the drylands of West Asia and North Africa.
    Keywords: Crop Production/Industries
    Date: 2018–07
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to investigate the relationship between trade and economic growth in Morocco with emphasis on both the role of exports and imports using yearly multivariate time series data covering the period from 1975 to 2015. Causality is tested within a vector autoregressive (VAR) framework, first using the augmented VAR model proposed by Toda and Yamamoto (1995) for cointegrated series to perform causality testing as described by Granger (1969), then by using the Vector Error Correction Model (VECM) proposed by Engle and Granger (1987) and analyzing the cointegration, Impulse Response Functions (IRF) and the Factor Error Variance Decomposition (FEVD) of the system. We found a one-way causality between exports and imports, and between Economic growth and Exports. These results re-veal that Morocco Imports are driven by the Exports that create a demand for technology, raw materials and consumable goods. In addition, the results show that Economic growth drives the country?s export, and therefore support the growth-led-exports hypothesis in the case of Morocco.
    Keywords: Trade, Economic Growth, Cointegration, Causality, VECM
    JEL: F43
    Date: 2018–07
    Abstract: Agricultural sector that has gained importance in the world. Agriculture field is critically important for the economy of every country. Countries accompany different agricultural production strategies in different regions in accordance with their priorities. The population of the world is rapidly increasing so, the need for food is also increasing. Nowadays, organic planting become a popular topic in the world. Organic agricultural production provide healthier food and more environmentally production system. In this study, a production planning model was developed based on Mean-Variance Model for the production of vegetables in Turkey, which has a significant agricultural production potential for the Aegean region. This study gives as a guide way to the manufacturers for the cultivation plans in future seasons.
    Keywords: Agriculture Economy, Organic Production, Agricultural Planning
    JEL: A10
    Date: 2018–07
  8. By: Hacer Güner Gören (Pamukkale University); Ay?egül I??ldar (Pamukkale University)
    Abstract: Due to the increase in environmental problems caused by solid wastes in recent years, it is mandatory to dispose these wastes in an environmentally and economically effective manner. Therefore, authorities should develop the most effective strategy for disposing solid wastes. In developing a solution to the solid wastes, different criteria such as economic, cultural, social and technical criteria related to this important problem should be taken into consideration together. These criteria might lead to different alternatives and the problem on hand becomes a multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) problem. In this study, a number of disposal techniques have been analyzed that could be applicable to Ankara, the capital city of Turkey. 8 different solid waste disposal systems and 15 criteria have been determined via the interviews of the experts from the field. To evaluate 8 disposal systems, three different multi-criteria decision making approaches have been used. Firstly, the problem has been dealt with two popular MCDM approaches, namely, Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) and Preference Ranking Organization Method for Enrichment Evaluations (PROMETHEE). As the third method, Best-Worst Method has been used for the first time in literature to evaluate the alternatives. The results obtained have been compared and evaluated.
    Keywords: Solid waste management, multi-criteria decision making, TOPSIS, PROMETHEE, Best-Worst method.
    Date: 2018–07
  9. By: Edel, Mirjam; Josua, Maria
    Abstract: How do authoritarian rulers legitimate repressive actions against their own citizens? Even in autocracies with limited accountability, discursive justifications are often put forward to decrease the costs of domestic repression. Although the research depicts state repression as the opposite of legitimation, justified coercion against some groups may generate legitimacy in the eyes of other parts of the population. This paper conceptualises the suggested links between legitimation and repression. It studies the justifications of mass killings by integrating framing theory with recent research on the domestic and international dimensions of authoritarian rule. Given the common threats at the global level and the diffusion of repressive tactics, we assume that discursive justifications of repression in authoritarian regimes change over time, probably due to learning processes. We compare Egypt and Uzbekistan to analyse the government rhetoric in the Rabi'a and Ferghana Valley protest crackdowns, respectively, taking into account the audiences of the framing and the sources of the frames that justify repression.
    Keywords: authoritarianism,protests,repression,state-society relations,framing
    Date: 2017

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