nep-ara New Economics Papers
on MENA - Middle East and North Africa
Issue of 2020‒09‒14
eleven papers chosen by
Paul Makdissi
Université d’Ottawa

  1. China-Middle East Economic Relations and the Belt and Road Initiative By Nader Habibi
  2. The impact of FTAs on MENA exports of intermediate and final goods By Cardozo, Adriana R.; Martínez-Zarzoso, Inmaculada; Vogler, Paula L.
  3. Obstacles to Labour Market Participation among Arab Women in Israel By Miaari, Sami H.; Khattab, Nabil; Sabbah-Karkabi, Maha
  4. The role of collaboration in the supply chain of the automotive industry in Morocco By Mohamed Hansali; Abdelwahed Gourch
  5. Impact of product customization on supply chain network and performance -The case of automotive industry in Morocco By Mohamed Hansali; Abdelouahed Gourch; Khalid Herradi
  6. Impact of information technology on strategic management in the banking sector of Iraq By Adetayo Adeniran; Hamid Jadah; Noor Mohammed
  7. Innovation policies and values of female managers from the Gulf: a qualitative study By Arnaud Lacheret
  8. Money, Banks, and Savings: A Comparative Analysis of Turkish Laypeople's Social Representations over Five Periods (1999-2017) By Jale Minibas-Poussard; Haluk Baran Bingöl; Christine Roland-Levy; Erkin Diyarbakirlioglu; Tutku Seckin-Celik
  9. The Influence of the Context on Adopting Mobile Games in Learning EFL Vocabulary at a Saudi Female Class By Madhawi Gh. Alharbi
  10. EMPOWERING WOMEN THROUGH MICROFINANCE IN DJIBOUTI By Mohamed Abdallah Ali; Mazhar Mughal; Dina Chhorn
  11. Les inégalités en Tunisie By Mongi BOUGHZALA

  1. By: Nader Habibi (Brandeis University)
    Abstract: While many Middle Eastern countries maintain strong military and strategic relations with the United States and Europe, they have significantly increased their trade and investment ties with China since 2000. China has emerged the largest trade partner and crude oil customer for most MENA countries. Now China is offering investment and financial incentive to Middle Eastern countries to join its Belt and Road global connectivity project. In Israel, Egypt and GCC countries China’s investments are oriented toward development of seaports and economic free zones near them. In Iran and Iraq, China is developing railways and highways to enhance their transit and transport connectivity in the Belt and Road land transport network. The Covid-19 pandemic has led to a setback in China’s infrastructure investments in MENA countries but it is using the health crisis to enhance its digital, telecommunication and healthcare related investments in the region. So far China has managed to maintain a policy and non-interference and neutrality in multiple conflicts among Middle Eastern countries and develop good relations with both sides of each conflict such as Iran and Saudi Arabia. China has also been very cautious about respecting the U.S. strategic interests in the region. The escalation of tensions between the United States and China might force China to change this strategy. China might react to recent attempts by the United States to prevent some MENA countries from awarding investment contracts to Chinese firms. China might also show more willingness to develop closer ties with the regional adversaries of the United States such as Iran and the Syrian regime.
    JEL: Q43 F55 O10
    Date: 2019–09
  2. By: Cardozo, Adriana R.; Martínez-Zarzoso, Inmaculada; Vogler, Paula L.
    Abstract: This paper is the first to analyze the impact of free trade agreements (FTAs) and the harmonization of rules of origin (RoO) on Middle East and North African (MENA) countries' exports differentiating between final and intermediate goods for a global sample of trade partners. Data on exports from four MENA countries (Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia) to 61 destinations over the period 1995-2016 are used to estimate a structural gravity model applying a Poisson Pseudo Maximum Likelihood (PPML) estimator. Moreover, the paper estimates the effect of the progressive adoption of the Pan-European-Mediterranean RoO. Results show that FTAs have been overall successful in increasing MENA exports. This is particularly truefor FTAs that eliminate protection on agricultural products. In contrast to the existing literature, we find that the agreements concluded with European countries raise MENA exports, whereas no significant impact is found for the application of the Pan-European RoO.
    Keywords: gravity model,FTA,MENA,PPML,panel data
    JEL: F10
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Miaari, Sami H. (Tel Aviv University); Khattab, Nabil (Doha Institute for Graduate Studies); Sabbah-Karkabi, Maha (University of Haifa)
    Abstract: This study investigates the factors that underlay the low labour force participation rate among Palestinian-Arab women in Israel relative to Jewish women despite the high educational attainment among this group. We focus on four factors that could explain this pattern: (i) socioeconomic factors such as age and education, (ii) culture factors such as the religiosity of the individual-woman and her family, (iii) family structure and related public policies, and (iv) the early retirement of Arab women from the labour market. We find that all four of these factors affect the probability of Palestinian-Arab women participating in the labour market. We conclude by discussing the implications of our findings for labour market policies.
    Keywords: labour market participation, Arab women, public policy, gender, nationality, religiosity, early retirement
    JEL: J01 J15 J13 J18 J26
    Date: 2020–08
  4. By: Mohamed Hansali (UH2MC - Université Hassan II [Casablanca]); Abdelwahed Gourch (UH2MC - Université Hassan II [Casablanca])
    Abstract: Competitiveness is no longer defined by price and quality alone, but also by service or otherwise the availability of products on the market, which is an essential factor in addition to the other factors of value creation and is becoming increasingly important. However, it is still difficult to give priority to service at the expense of cost control, and the objective is therefore to ensure the availability of products in the markets despite their turbulence without having a significant impact on costs. In this respect, collaborative practices show satisfying results by ensuring flexibility and responsiveness (operational performance) without significantly impacting costs (cost performance). The research project we are conducting focuses on collaborative practices for learning in the automotive industry in Morocco, but first we want to make sure of the effect and results of these practices in this context, which is the subject of this paper. The empirical study shows that collaborative practices are more correlated with operational performance than cost performance.
    Abstract: La compétitivité n'est plus désormais définie par le prix et la qualité seulement, mais aussi par le service ou autrement la disponibilité des produits sur le marché, un facteur essentiel qui s'ajoute aux autres facteurs de création de valeur et qui se justifie de plus en plus. Il reste néanmoins difficile de donner priorité au service au détriment de maîtrise des coûts et l'objectif se dresse alors ainsi : assurer une disponibilité des produits dans les marchés malgré leur turbulence sans impacter pour autant les coûts. Les pratiques collaboratives montrent à cet égard des résultats satisfaisants en assurant flexibilité et réactivité (performance opérationnelle) sans impacter sensiblement les coûts (performance des coûts). Le projet de recherche que nous menons porte sur les pratiques collaboratives d'apprentissage dans l'industrie automobile au Maroc, le sujet du présent article est de nous assurer de l'effet et des résultats de ces pratiques dans ce contexte. L'étude empirique montre que les pratiques collaboratives sont plus corrélées avec la performance opérationnelle que la performance des coûts.
    Keywords: Supply chain collaboration,Supply chain flexibility,supply chain performance,impact assessment,turbulent markets,Étude d’impact,Marchés turbulents
    Date: 2020
  5. By: Mohamed Hansali (UH2MC - Université Hassan II [Casablanca]); Abdelouahed Gourch (UH2MC - Université Hassan II [Casablanca]); Khalid Herradi (Université Hassan 1er [Settat])
    Abstract: Numerous studies today focus on the configuration of the supply chain for markets requiring complex products, otherwise known as highly customized products, and the required performance. The purpose of the present research is to ensure first of all this relationship between product customization, supply chain network configuration and performance in the context of the automotive industry in Morocco. The results show that product customization has an impact on the supply chain network which in turn impacts its performance.
    Keywords: impact assessment,product customization,supply chain network,Turbulent markets
    Date: 2020–08–01
  6. By: Adetayo Adeniran (FUTA - Federal University of Technology of Akure); Hamid Jadah (University of Kerbala - Partenaires INRAE); Noor Mohammed (Imam AL- Kadhum College)
    Abstract: The main objective of the study is to examine the impact of information technology on strategic management in the banking sector. The specific objectives are to identify the applications of information technology in banking sector; to examine the association between education level and customer's usage of IT applications in the banking sector; and to examine the relationship between information technology and organization's strategy. The methodology of the study is supported by interview of bank customers and interview of industry experts based on purposive sampling technique. The findings revealed that Electronic cards, ATMs, online banking, electronic payment, and mobile banking were the major application of IT in Iraq banking sector. There is an association between education level of bank customers and their usage of IT applications regarding banking transactions in Iraq. There is a relationship between information technology and organization's strategy which has resulted in value creation and competitive advantage of banks. It was recommended that for better performance of IT on banking, the management of banking sector should adopt better policies that will encourage users to adopt IT usage in banks. The main contribution of this study is that information technology enhances value creation and competitive advantage in Iraq banks.
    Keywords: information technology,banking sector,strategic management
    Date: 2020–06–30
  7. By: Arnaud Lacheret (Arabian Gulf University)
    Abstract: Promoting an innovative mindset is one of the main objectives of all the Governments and institutions of the Arabo-Persian Gulf. This paper is part of findings of a qualitative study on female managers from 3 countries of the GCC impacted by those reforms. The research leads to a new definition of modernity in the Arabian world, impulsed by the females and their dramatic contribution to the changing of the mindset of the region. More than new regulations, this changing mindset driven by the new behaviour and attitudes of females is a key driver to promote innovation within the Gulf region.
    Keywords: leadership,islam,muslim woman,gulf,gulf countries,Saudi Arabia
    Date: 2020
  8. By: Jale Minibas-Poussard (IRG - Institut de Recherche en Gestion - UPEC UP12 - Université Paris-Est Créteil Val-de-Marne - Paris 12 - UNIV GUSTAVE EIFFEL - Université Gustave Eiffel); Haluk Baran Bingöl; Christine Roland-Levy (URCA - Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne); Erkin Diyarbakirlioglu (IRG - Institut de Recherche en Gestion - UPEM - Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée - UPEC UP12 - Université Paris-Est Créteil Val-de-Marne - Paris 12); Tutku Seckin-Celik (IMU - Istanbul Medeniyet University)
    Abstract: The way and context-specific scope of how money and banks are mirrored in citizens' minds is an expanding area of research in relation to economic psychology. Through the analysis of data collected from salaried employees, self-employed professionals, and small/medium enterprise [SME] owners, lay people's social representations for money, saving and banks in Turkey are comparatively investigated and analysed over time. Grounded in a previous study by authors (undisclosed), with respective samples from the years of a new fifth dataset for 2017 is introduced here. Changing priorities, understanding and cognitive constructs related to money, banks and savings were particularly analysed to be substantially interconnected with the evolving socioeconomic dynamics and conditions of the crisis periods. Negative evocations and lack of trust became prominent as to the findings such that banks are seen as contemporary pawnshops; money is mirrored as a symbol of power, prestige and reputation, and cannot be achieved through hard work.
    Keywords: Social Representations,Money,Bank,Savings
    Date: 2020
  9. By: Madhawi Gh. Alharbi (Saudi ministry of education, Saudi Arabia,)
    Abstract: Learning English is a significant issue worldwide. As Saudi students experienced a difficulty in learning new English words, new teaching methods have been introduced including mobile games. Though we live in a global world where learning and teaching issues became similar, different contexts affect the process of using mobile games in formal learning and this study’s purpose is to investigate the influence of the Saudi context on adopting mobile games in formal female classes. Total of 40 research participants, consisting of 33 students, 4 EFL teachers, 2 school principals and one EFL educational supervisor participated in this study. A mobile game was designed and programmed for the sake of this study. Data were collected from different sources, namely, interviews, focus group discussions and self-reflective essays. Collected data were analyzed qualitatively to yield the study’s results. Results showed that the Saudi social context has a significant influence and an important role in adopting mobile games in female classes. These results will assist other researchers in mobile games’ developers, educationalists in understanding the role of social context over adopting new teaching methods and in choosing or programming games for learning English or any other foreign language.
    Keywords: mobile games, context, EFL in Saudi
    Date: 2020–06
  10. By: Mohamed Abdallah Ali (IRMAPE - Institut de Recherche en Management et Pays Emergents - ESC Pau, CATT - Centre d'Analyse Théorique et de Traitement des données économiques - UPPA - Université de Pau et des Pays de l'Adour); Mazhar Mughal (ESC Pau); Dina Chhorn (GREThA - Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée - UB - Université de Bordeaux - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, UNIL - Université de Lausanne)
    Date: 2020–09–01
  11. By: Mongi BOUGHZALA
    Abstract: Cet article analyse les inégalités, monétaires et non-monétaires, en Tunisie et essaie d’en comprendre les origines et la dynamique. Il soulève le puzzle des inégalités ainsi que la relation entre les inégalités et les protestations sociales survenues depuis Décembre 2010. Il procède à la mesure et à l’analyse des inégalités monétaires au niveau global et par région et par milieu. Il montre que ces inégalités, quoique importantes et politiquement préoccupantes, sont relativement modérées et avaient baissé entre 1985 et 2015. La cohérence de ce résultat est revue en examinant les principaux déterminants des inégalités des revenus dont la croissance économique et démographique, l’emploi, la fiscalité, la protection sociale, la répartition initiale des richesses et l’accès au financement. L’étudie des dimensions non monétaires des inégalités montre que malgré les progrès réalisés dans tout le territoire, les disparités demeurent importantes et que les inégalités des chances offertes aux enfants, aux jeunes et aux femmes sont préoccupantes. La relation entre inégalités et cohésion sociale est abordée en relation avec les causes de la révolution de 2011. Enfin, quelques pistes en termes de politiques publiques sont proposées en vue de réduire les inégalités des revenus et des chances.
    Keywords: Tunisie
    JEL: Q
    Date: 2020–09–10

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