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Fiscal policy in the GCC countries: towards ensuring sustainability

By Assil El Mahmah and Magda Kandil The countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are all seeking to promote diversification of their economies away from continued dependence on the energy ... read more

Contagion vulnerability of MENA economies

By Simon Neaime The weak economic performance of MENA countries in recent years would deteriorate further in the event of fresh negative shocks to the world economy.. ... read more

Fiscal policy to help escape MENA’s low productivity trap

By Niranjan Sarangi and Khalid Abu-Ismail Many countries in the Middle East and North Africa are locked in a ‘low productivity trap’ despite shifts in employment towards non-farm and non-oil sectors .. ... read more

Poverty reduction efforts in Iran: the wrecking force of inflation

By Ali Enami and Nora Lustig Iran’s universal cash transfer (UCT) programme plays an important role in fighting poverty. But as this column shows, its real value and impact on the country’s ... read more

Guidelines for cost-effective public procurement: lessons from Turkey

By Bedri Kamil Onur Tas Cost-effectiveness is the key objective in public procurement auctions. This column reports analysis and evidence from Turkey on how best that can be achieved through attracting the ... read more

Tax reform for equity and fiscal space in middle-income Arab countries

By Niranjan Sarangi and Khalid Abu-Ismail Arab countries have systematically low tax collection rates relative to the size of their economies. What’s more, with rising military expenditures and lower oil prices, the ... read more

Fiscal rules: how to reduce pro-cyclical public spending

By Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel and Raimundo Soto Fiscal pro-cyclicality is a defining trait of many MENA countries and other emerging economies: public spending typically rises in good times and falls in bad times. This ... read more

Prospects for development with democracy in the Arab world

By Samir Makdisi What are the prospects for democracy in the Arab world? This column expresses the hope that as conflict-afflicted countries embark on their programmes ... ... read more

The Political Economy of the Private Sector in the Middle East

The MENA region suffers from a fragile private sector that is weakly connected with global markets and thrives largely under state patronage. Although extensive state-business interactions can form the basis ... read more

The Political Economy of Contemporary Arab Societies

ERF has organized a workshop on "The Political Economy of Contemporary Arab Societies", in Beirut, Lebanon, in collaboration with The Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs (IFI), ... read more

The Economic Fallout from the Arab Spring

By Mohsin Khan, nonresident Senior Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, Atlantic Council The promise of democracy and self-determination was the driving force in the ... read more