1st Edition

Tunisia's Economic Development Why Better than Most of the Middle East but Not East Asia

    386 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book identifies the differences in growth and development, and the various factors lying behind them, across both Middle East and North African (MENA) and East Asian countries over the 1960‒2020 period. It considers a very wide range of factors, compares initial situations, institutions, and government policies, the dynamic responses to changing circumstances, and discusses the inability of the governments of the MENA region to achieve not only political reform, but also the kinds of economic reform that would allow their citizens to prosper in an increasingly globalized world. The book focuses on Tunisia. Since its independence in 1956 until 2010, Tunisia had considerable success relative to many other MENA countries, but was somewhat less successful relative to East Asian countries. Since 2010, however, while transitioning away from autocracy to democracy, it has been in rather serious economic decline. The book highlights how both the factors identified as enabling Tunisia’s initial success and those leading to its subsequent decline can provide many useful insights for improving the management of economic development across the whole MENA region and perhaps also to developing countries throughout the world.

    1. Introduction: Tunisia's Economic and Social Outcomes in Comparative Perspective 2. Structural Transformation and Long Term Growth in Tunisia and across Sample Countries 3. A Historical Perspective on Tunisia' Development: Initial Conditions, Strategies and Policies 4. Why Has Tunisia Been More Successful in Growth and Development than Other MENA Countries? 5. Why Has Tunisia Not Done as Well in Economic Growth and Economic Development as the Most Successful East Asian Countries? 6. A Political Economy Analysis of the Balance over time Between the Roles of the State, Markets and the Private Sector 7. Uprisings, Democracy and Transition 8. Conclusions


    Mustapha K. Nabli has been Professor of Economics at the University of Tunis, Chairman of the Tunis Stock Exchange, Minister of Planning, Regional and Economic Development in the Government of Tunisia, Chief Economist and Director of the Social and Economic Development Department for the Middle East and North Africa Region at the World Bank, and Governor of the Central Bank of Tunisia.

    Jeffrey B. Nugent is Professor of Economics at the University of Southern California, USA. He has worked on and in various countries of both the MENA and East Asian regions including for the United Nations, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has also served on the Board of both the Cairo-based Economic Research Forum and as President of the Middle East Economic Association.