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Middle East Oil Exporters

What Happened to Economic Development? Hossein Askari, Iran Professor of International Business and Professor of International Affairs, The George Washington University, US
Middle East Oil Exporters presents a detailed picture of the economic structure and a critical survey of the recent economic performance of the Middle East. The focus is especially on the large oil-exporting nations, although the smaller producers are represented as well. The author illustrates how oil has become a crutch to avoid reforms, destroying the work ethic of the region, fuelling corruption and poisoning the social and cultural fabric of society to keep unpopular governments in power. In addition, he provides a view of the social, economic, and political implications of Islamic doctrine. In this context he examines the institutions of governance and determines that they have performed poorly, often in blatant violation of Islamic principles. This in-depth analysis is accompanied by a comprehensive prescription for a turnaround in the Middle East.
Extent: 384 pp
Hardback Price: $175.00 Web: $157.50
Publication Date: 2007
ISBN: 978 1 84542 909 6
Availability: In Stock
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  • Business and Management
  • International Business
  • Development Studies
  • Development Economics
  • Development Studies
  • Economics and Finance
  • Development Economics
  • International Economics
Hossein Askari argues here that economic and social failure in the oil-exporting countries of the Middle East is a result of much more than simply shortcomings in economic policies. He analyzes religion, corruption, instability, wars and foreign interference as factors affecting the region and offers solutions that incorporate Islamic teachings, regional peace efforts, market-oriented economic policies, sound institutions and unselfish policy support from the West.

Middle East Oil Exporters presents a detailed picture of the economic structure and a critical survey of the recent economic performance of the Middle East. The focus is especially on the large oil-exporting nations, although the smaller producers are represented as well. The author illustrates how oil has become a crutch to avoid reforms, destroying the work ethic of the region, fuelling corruption and poisoning the social and cultural fabric of society to keep unpopular governments in power. In addition, he provides a view of the social, economic, and political implications of Islamic doctrine. In this context he examines the institutions of governance and determines that they have performed poorly, often in blatant violation of Islamic principles. This in-depth analysis is accompanied by a comprehensive prescription for a turnaround in the Middle East.

Hossein Askari’s unique and insightful critique is essential reading for students and scholars of the Middle East, as well as policymakers involved in the region. Executives of financial institutions and private corporations will also want to understand the region for their energy needs and as a market for their products and services.
‘This volume is unique and unprecedented in the way that it ties together various political and economic dimensions to draw a picture of the future Middle East scenarios. It gives us a far-reaching analysis of the reasons underlying economic conditions in the major oil-exporting countries of the Middle East. It also provides a comprehensive and positive blueprint for a social, political and economic turnaround. Hossein Askari’s insider experience in most of these countries makes this valuable work a must-read for specialists and students of the area.’
– Hossein Razavi, Director of Finance, Private Sector and Infrastructure
Department, Middle East and North Africa Region, The World Bank, US

‘Anyone who wants to grasp the economic status of this rather special, perhaps unique, part of the world will find here a knowledgeable and assiduous guide. Secondly, the book presents a strong and uncompromising argument about what these countries must do, and what the West must do, to improve the economic performance and social fabric of the MENA region, and thus better the daily lives of the inhabitants.’
– From the foreword by Robert M. Solow, Nobel Laureate, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US
Contents: Foreword by Robert M. Solow 1. Introduction 2. The Blessing and the Curse of Oil 3. Islam, Governance and Economic Development 4. Instability, Regional Conflicts and External Intervention 5. Physical and Social Indicators 6. Broad Economic Indicators and Performance 7. Government Finances 8. External Sector 9. Labor and Employment 10. Capital Flows 11. Law and Order, Business Climate, Economic Freedom and Country Risk 12. Military Expenditures and the Cost of Conflicts 13. Policy Assessment: A Synthesis of Successes and Failures 14. The Way Forward Appendices Bibliography Glossary Index