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Is the Middle East the world’s most unequal region?

By Lydia Assouad Survey-based estimates suggest that inequality in Middle Eastern countries is not particularly high by historical and international standards. This column reports research that combines household surveys, national accounts,.. ... 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


Multidimensional poverty in the poorest parts of MENA: agenda for action

By Khalid Abu-Ismail and  Bilal Al-Kiswani A new measure of household poverty in the Arab countries provides the basis for tailored solutions across the region. This column reports the key findings of ... read more


Financial inclusion, financial stability and inequality

By Simon Neaime Are programmes aimed at promoting financial inclusion in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) leading to less poverty and income inequality and more financial stability? ... read more


Microcredit: choosing between inclusion and impact?

By Ralph De Haas The microfinance industry continues to grow rapidly in the MENA region. This column reports research from across the world showing that giving people access to microcredit does not ... read more


Inequality underestimated in Egypt: evidence from house prices

By Roy Van der Weide, Christoph Lakner and Elena Ianchovichina Standard estimates of income and consumption inequality rank Egypt as one of the world’s most equal countries. By analysing data on ... read more


An agenda for reducing income inequality in the Arab countries

By Khalid Abu-Ismail What can be done to reduce income inequality in Arab countries? This column explores issues of measurement as well as potential policy measures... ... read more


Live Debate on: Free Higher Education and Equity

Keeping in tune with changing economic thought on education strategies and policies, ERF and The Tunisian Economic Association are organizing a live debate on: Free Higher Education and Equity: Does ... read more


Structural Transformation is Key for Poverty Reduction in Arab Countries

By Khalid Abu-Ismail, Chief of the Economic Development and Poverty Section at UN-ESCWA. The long-term development vision for the Arab region should address the core challenge ... read more