As world leaders head to New York this week for the United Nations General Assembly, there is still no end to the heart-breaking images of war-torn cities in the Middle East and North Africa, and of a massive exodus of people […]
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By Pritha Mitra
Version in عربي (Arabic)
Every year, millions of people leave their countries of birth in search of better opportunities abroad. Often, these migrants are among the most talented workers in their home countries. At first glance, this is a loss for the home countries, which invested considerable time and money in educating and developing these […]
Heiko Hesse is an Senior Economist in the Strategy, Policy and Review (SPR) Department at the IMF, where he works on IMF program issues. He was seconded to the European Commission during 2016-2019, where he primarily worked on Italy and risk issues. He also has been an Adjunct Professor at Université Libre Brussels since 2017. Heiko’s IMF career since […]
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region suffers significant shortcoming in data, which are particularly problematic at a time economic transition. There are important data gaps, poor data quality and in many cases, internationally agreed standards of statistical methodologies, compilation periodicity and timeliness, and data dissemination practices are not followed.
Just as the "Arab Spring" opened a debate about politics in the Middle East, we now need an "Economic Spring" on how to rethink the region's economic future. Of course each country will have to define its own strategy, but there will be some common issues that will have to be addressed.
Young people were innocent bystanders in the global financial crisis, but they may well end up paying the heaviest price for the policy mistakes that have led us to where we are today. Young people will have to pay the taxes to service the debts accumulated in recent years.
The informal economy is large and pervasive—and, often, ignored; however, the experience of those who work in the informal sector came under the media spotlight when Tunisian street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire that fateful day in December last year, sparking the Arab Spring protests.
Sebastián Sosa has been an economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) since 2006. He currently works in the Regional Studies Division of the Western Hemisphere Department, focusing on macroeconomic issues in Latin America, and previously served on the teams for Bolivia, Mexico, Uruguay, and Lebanon. Prior to joining the IMF, he was a professor (macroeconomics) at […]
My core takeaway from all these events is that the underlying sense of optimism in the promise of the Arab Spring is very much there, but there is also a growing recognition that managing the short-term transition will be even more difficult with the persistence of economic pressures and rising social expectations.