OECD Development Centre Working Papers

The OECD Development Centre links OECD members with developing and emerging economies and fosters debate and discussion to seek creative policy solutions to emerging global issues and development challenges. This series of working papers is intended to disseminate the OECD Development Centre’s research findings rapidly among specialists in the field concerned. These papers are generally available in the original English or French, with a summary in the other language.

English, French

Trade Strategies for the Southern Mediterranean

The lagging economic performance of the Southern Mediterranean (SOM) region over the past decade is often attributed to the region’s relative lack of openness to international trade. The closer analysis of the region’s trade patterns undertaken in this study suggest a more complex picture. These findings show that except for Syria and to a lesser extent Morocco, the region’s overall trade flows are above international norms, that is, levels predicted given the country economic characteristics. Moreover, they also suggest that intra-regional trade, with some qualifications, is relatively high given the region’s economic characteristics. Nevertheless, trade relationships in the Southern Mediterranean appear to lack the vitality of those in East Asia and even Eastern Europe. The Southern Mediterranean’s trade is expanding relatively slowly, exports are concentrated in relatively slow-growing sectors, and the region does not figure prominently in the multinational production strategies ...


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