Following an overview of the economic aspects of the ongoing globalization process, this paper documents the extent to which Arab economies have benefited from this process while minimizing the risks. It argues that there is considerable potential, as well as need, for these countries to integrate more fully into the world economy, thereby contributing to their efforts to achieve and sustain high economic growth, create more employment opportunities, and improve living standards. The paper sets out the factors that will determine the extent to which this policy challenge is met. It concludes by pointing to the reasons for optimism: recognition by most Arab governments of the importance of meeting the challenge; the economic reforms that are being implemented in the region in partnership with the private sector; and the success already being achieved by some countries in the region.
Author(s): Mohamed A. El-Erian