nep-ara New Economics Papers
on MENA - Middle East and North Africa
Issue of 2022‒02‒14
twelve papers chosen by
Paul Makdissi
Université d’Ottawa

  1. Intergenerational Income Mobility in Turkey Abstract: By Nizam MelikÅŸah Demirtas; Orhan Torul
  2. Projecting Saudi sectoral electricity demand in 2030 using a computable general equilibrium model By Salaheddine Soummane; F. Ghersi
  3. Spatial Wage Curves for Formal and Informal Workers in Turkey By Badi H. Baltagi; Yusuf Soner Başkaya
  5. Targeting Household Deprivations for Multidimensional Poverty Alleviation: An Application to Tunisian Data By Nasri, Khaled; Weslati, Adnen
  6. Interaction entre le déficit budgétaire et le déficit commercial au Maroc : Analyse VAR By Ayad El Baz; Zakariae Belmkaddem
  7. Getting stuck in the status quo ante: Evidence from the Egyptian Economy By Doruka, Ömer Tuğsal; Pastore, Francesco
  8. Determinants of professional paths of university graduates in morocco: longitudinal study By Fatima Berahou; Abdeljebbar Abdouni
  9. The Gendered Impact of Rural Road Improvement on Schooling Decisions and Youth Employment in Morocco By Yasuharu Shimamura; Satoshi Shimizutani; Eiji Yamada; Hiroyuki Yamada
  10. Reducing vulnerability to forced labor and trafficking of short-term, low-skilled women migrant workers in the South Asia to Middle East corridor By ElDidi, Hagar; van Biljon, Chloe; Alvi, Muzna Fatima; Ringler, Claudia; Ratna, Nazmun; Abdulrahim, Sawsan; Kilby, Patrick; Wu, Joyce; Choudhury, Zahid ul Arefin
  11. Jordan: Third Review under the Extended Arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility and Request for Modification of Performance Criteria-Press Release; Staff Report; and Statement by the Executive Director for Jordan By International Monetary Fund
  12. International ownership and SMEs in Middle Eastern and African economies By Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina; Basuony, Mohamed A. K.; Lutz, Stefan; Mohamed, Ehab K. A.

  1. By: Nizam MelikÅŸah Demirtas; Orhan Torul
    Date: 2021–05
  2. By: Salaheddine Soummane (KAPSARC - King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center); F. Ghersi (CIRED - Centre International de Recherche sur l'Environnement et le Développement - Cirad - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AgroParisTech - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Electricity demand in Saudi Arabia is undergoing unprecedented changes following the implementation of efficiency measures and energy price reforms. These changes raise uncertainties about the potential trajectory of long-term electricity demand. Thus, this study uses a computable general equilibrium model to project sectoral electricity demand in Saudi Arabia through 2030. We project that growth in total Saudi electricity demand will significantly decelerate over the coming decade compared with historical trends. In our reference scenario, this demand reaches 365.4 terawatthours (TWh) by 2030. However, our sectoral decomposition shows large disparities across sectors. Demand is projected to grow more rapidly in the industrial and services segments than in the residential sector. We also simulate four additional scenarios for domestic electricity price reforms and efficiency policies. Successfully implementing these measures may result in significant energy savings. Aligning Saudi electricity prices with the average electricity price among G20 countries can reduce total electricity demand by up to 71.6 TWh in 2030. Independently enforcing efficiency policies can reduce total electricity demand by up to 118.7 TWh. Moreover, alternative policy scenarios suggest that the macroeconomic gains from energy savings can alleviate some of the Saudi energy system's burden on public finance.
    Keywords: Electricity demand,General equilibrium model,Saudi Arabia,Electricity market reforms
    Date: 2022
  3. By: Badi H. Baltagi (Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University, 426 Eggers Hall, Syracuse, NY 13244); Yusuf Soner Başkaya (Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow, G12 8QQ, Glasgow, UK)
    Abstract: This paper estimates spatial wage curves for formal and informal workers in Turkey using individual level data from the Turkish Household Labor Force Survey (THLFS) provided by TURKSTAT for the period 2008-2014. Unlike previous studies on wage curves for formal and informal workers, we extend the analysis to allow for spatial effects. We also consider household characteristics that would affect the selection into formal employment, informal employment, and non-employment. We find that the spatial wage curve relation holds both for formal and informal workers in Turkey for a variety of specifications. In general, the wages of informal workers are more sensitive to the unemployment rates of the same region and other regions than formal workers. We find that accounting for the selection into formal and informal employment affects the magnitudes but not the significance of the spatial wage curves for the formal and informal workers with the latter always being larger in absolute value than that for formal workers.
    Keywords: Spatial Wage Curve, Spatial Weights, Regional Labor Markets, Informal Labor Markets
    JEL: C21 J30 J60
    Date: 2022–02
  4. By: Maya El Hourani (UCA - Université Côte d'Azur); Gerard Mondello (UCA - Université Côte d'Azur)
    Abstract: Les opinions exprimées dans la série des Documents de travail GREDEG sont celles des auteurs et ne reflèlent pas nécessairement celles de l'institution. Les documents n'ont pas été soumis à un rapport formel et sont donc inclus dans cette série pour obtenir des commentaires et encourager la discussion. Les droits sur les documents appartiennent aux auteurs. The views expressed in the GREDEG Working Paper Series are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the institution. The Working Papers have not undergone formal review and approval. Such papers are included in this series to elicit feedback and to encourage debate. Copyright belongs to the author(s).
    Keywords: Bank capital,institutional quality,credit supply,and MENA region
    Date: 2021–12–26
  5. By: Nasri, Khaled; Weslati, Adnen
    Abstract: This paper proposes a targeting methodology focused on household's deprivations that helps the public decision-maker in Tunisia to alleviate multidimensional poverty. In the first part of this research, we intend to decipher the relationship between official poverty measurement and anti-poverty programs currently implemented in Tunisia, with special emphasis on their targeting performance and on the divergence observed between the beneficiary selection process at the regional level and the official identification of poor households. Next, we will outline the proposed targeting methodology using the counting identification approach and we estimate three groups of potential beneficiaries reflecting three degrees of poverty. Our empirical findings show that if a household becomes deprived in one dimension, then he will automatically be considered a potential beneficiary of the anti-poverty program. In terms of budget allocation, categorizing beneficiaries by group allows the public decision-maker to prioritize the most urgent situations in the country, even in the case of an austerity policy. On the other hand, to eradicate poverty in all its forms everywhere, it would be useful to strengthen the targeting of the poor population through a forward-looking policy targeting households living in vulnerability to poverty.
    Keywords: Multidimensional Poverty Alleviation,Targeting,Counting Approach,Tunisia
    JEL: C54 C43 I18 H12
    Date: 2022
  6. By: Ayad El Baz (UCD - Université Chouaib Doukkali); Zakariae Belmkaddem (UCD - Université Chouaib Doukkali)
    Date: 2020–12–23
  7. By: Doruka, Ömer Tuğsal; Pastore, Francesco
    Abstract: In this study, for the first time, to our knowledge, we use the propensity score matching algorithm to estimate the probability to remain 'stuck in the status-quo ante' across generations in Egypt. We use repeated cross-sectional data relative to a 20-year period from 1998 to 2018 to build transition matrices of intergenerational occupational mobility. The findings of the econometric analysis hint at a low degree of occupational mobility, with children of fathers in the agricultural sector or holding a blue- or white-collar job remaining linked to the profession of their fathers in most cases and experiencing only rarely upward mobility from agricultural to blue- and white-collar jobs.
    Keywords: Intergenerational occupational mobility,Status quo bias,Propensity score matching,Egypt
    JEL: C35 D64 J24 J62 L16
    Date: 2022
  8. By: Fatima Berahou (Université Hassan 1er, Faculté d'économie et de gestion); Abdeljebbar Abdouni (Université Hassan 1er, Faculté d'économie et de gestion)
    Abstract: This study focuses on the professional paths during the thirty-six months following graduation from the university in 2009. This promotion is the only one for which monthly longitudinal data are available and which allow dynamic monitoring of graduates since leaving university. It is therefore appropriate to analyze the professional path or a process of integration in the market labor. The study is intended to be a monograph of the different paths and successions of employment status, studies, unemployment, and inactivity, leading or not to job stabilization, using a recent classification method (optimal matching). This research also relied on a multinomial logit model to analyze the different factors contributing to belonging to a given professional trajectory. In this analysis, we construct six typical professional paths, namely, trajectories marked by immediate access to employment and professional stabilization, access to employment after periods of unemployment, obtaining a job after studies or inactivity, persistence of unemployment, persistence of inactivity and dominance of periods of further study. In addition, the analysis of the individual determinants of the belonging of university graduates' to the different typical paths leads to the importance of the role of the socio-demographic and academic characteristics of the graduate. The first result is the persistence of inequalities between men and women. Family characteristics also determine the paths of graduates, for example, the high level of education of parents promotes rapid access to employment. Finally, the diploma is a crucial factor of access to employment. Holders of BAC + 3 diplomas are the most exposed to the risk of unemployment.
    Abstract: Cet article examine les trajectoires professionnelles des diplômés des universités de la promotion 2009. Cette promotion est la seule, jusqu'à présent, dont on dispose de données longitudinales mensuelles et qui permettent un suivi dynamique des diplômés sur une période de 36 mois après la sortie de l'université. Il y a lieu ainsi de parler de trajectoire professionnelle ou de processus d'insertion. L'étude se veut une monographie des différents parcours qui revêtent une succession d'états d'emploi, de chômage, d'études et d'inactivité, menant ou non à la stabilisation en emploi, basée sur une méthode récente de classification (appariement optimal). Cette recherche s'est appuyée également sur un modèle logit multinomial pour analyser les différents facteurs concourant à l'appartenance à une trajectoire professionnelle donnée. L'analyse débouche sur la construction de six trajectoires professionnelles types, à savoir, les trajectoires marquées par un accès immédiat à l'emploi et une stabilisation professionnelle, accès différé à l'emploi après des périodes de chômage, décrocher un emploi après des épisodes d'études ou d'inactivité, persistance du chômage, persistance d'inactivité et dominance des périodes de poursuite d'études. De plus, l'analyse des déterminants individuels de l'appartenance des diplômés des universités aux différentes trajectoires types débouche sur l'importance du rôle des caractéristiques socio-démographiques et académiques du diplômé. L'un des principaux résultats est la persistance d'inégalités entre hommes et femmes. Les caractéristiques familiales déterminent également les parcours des diplômés, entre autres, le niveau d'instruction élevé des parents qui favorise l'accès rapide et durable à l'emploi. Finalement, le diplôme constitue un facteur crucial d'accès à l'emploi et les titulaires des diplômes de niveau BAC+3 sont les plus exposés au risque de chômage.
    Keywords: Professional Paths,Labour Market,Employment,Unemployment,Human Capital
    Date: 2021–12–30
  9. By: Yasuharu Shimamura (Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies, Kobe University); Satoshi Shimizutani (JICA Ogata Sadako Research Institute for Peace and Development); Eiji Yamada (JICA Ogata Sadako Research Institute for Peace and Development); Hiroyuki Yamada (Faculty of Economics, Keio University)
    Abstract: This paper examines the impact of a rural road improvement project on schooling decisions and youth employment in Morocco. Paved rural roads are expected to reduce travel time and costs, allowing additional school choices and increasing the motivation for youth to enter higher education in response to higher returns. On the other hand, immediate earnings opportunities created by new connections may encourage youth to seek paid employment. Thus, the impact of rural road improvement on schooling and youth employment warrants empirical investigation. We employ a difference-indifferences estimation using a household-level dataset with a five-year interval collected under a quasi-experimental setting. First, we do not observe any positive effect on primary school completion for either sex, but we find a positive and significant effect on secondary school attainment or above only for females. Moreover, the higher educational attainment of females is associated with a lower proportion of early marriage. Second, we do not observe any significant effects on self-employment for either sex, but we find a positive and significant effect on wage employment only for males, which is pronounced among the better educated. Our findings reveal sharp gendered differences in the impact of the rural road improvement project, with increased motivation toward better education for females and paid work for males.
    Keywords: rural road improvement, schooling outcomes, youth employment, market integration, Morocco, gender.
    JEL: I25 O18 J24
    Date: 2022–01–04
  10. By: ElDidi, Hagar; van Biljon, Chloe; Alvi, Muzna Fatima; Ringler, Claudia; Ratna, Nazmun; Abdulrahim, Sawsan; Kilby, Patrick; Wu, Joyce; Choudhury, Zahid ul Arefin
    Abstract: Millions of female migrants experience various forms of exploitative and unsafe conditions when migrating for employment and income generation, both in countries of origin and in destination countries. Vulnerabilities increased further due to the Covid-19 pandemic, causing income and job losses, entrapment in countries of destination without financial or social support and stigmatization upon return. One of the key migration routes travelled by millions of migrants is from South Asia to the Middle East. We examine this migration route for low-skilled female migrant workers highlighting the impacts of interventions along the migration pathway to determine the effectiveness of alternative mechanisms for reducing forced labour and trafficking. We draw lessons from the literature as well as from interviews with key informants in the field, including academics, development partners, NGO workers, and policymakers, to identify promising interventions that successfully reduce the vulnerability of women migrants. We find that, while Covid-19 has increased migrant vulnerability, it has also exposed the current system’s violations in facilitating trafficking and exacerbating poor working conditions.
    Keywords: SOUTH ASIA; ASIA; MIDDLE EAST; AFRICA; labour; forced labour; migration; women; vulnerability; Coronavirus; coronavirus disease; Coronavirinae; COVID-19; migrant labour; working conditions; policies; labour trafficking; low-skilled work
    Date: 2021
  11. By: International Monetary Fund
    Abstract: Preventive actions and a robust vaccination campaign mitigated the effects of COVID-19 variants on the economy. A nascent recovery, supported by targeted fiscal and monetary measures, is underway, with real GDP growth expected at 2 percent in 2021, strengthening to 2.7 percent in 2022. However, unemployment is persisting at very high levels, particularly for the youth. Core inflation, at 0.7 percent y-o-y in September, is subdued, despite higher fuel prices, reflecting a slow pass-through, but also weak domestic demand. Reserves are comfortable, and dollarization is declining.
    Date: 2022–01–06
  12. By: Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina; Basuony, Mohamed A. K.; Lutz, Stefan; Mohamed, Ehab K. A.
    Abstract: Empirical evidence suggests that international ownership of local firms supports firm performance and growth through various channels such as financing, technology transfer, and improved access to international markets. This is particularly true for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that otherwise may lack access to a variety of vital resources. At the same time small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) formation may promote economic development. The relationship between firm performance and international ownership has been well explored for firms in developed economies but this is not the case for firms - including SMEs - in Africa and the Middle East. Largely due to lack of relevant cross-country financial data, existing literature on African and Middle-Eastern firms has presented survey-based evidence on firm performance while evidence based on detailed financial information remains lacking. The present paper aims at filling this research gap. We identify African and Middle-Eastern SMEs operating in the formal sector and examine the impact of ownership structure on firm performance. We use cross-sectional financial data covering about 25,500 companies - including about 30% SMEs - in 69 African and Middle-Eastern countries for the years 2006 to 2015. Our results indicate that international ownership has significant positive association with firm performance. For internationally-owned SMEs this appears to be true despite lower levels of equity and debt capital, implying that internationally-owned firms use international resources - other than capital - more efficiently!
    Date: 2022

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