Middle East and North Africa Investment Policy Perspectives

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Middle East and North Africa Investment Policy Perspectives highlights the considerable progress in investment policies made by the region’s governments over the past decade. Yet, the reform momentum needs to be sustained and deepened for the benefits of investment to be shared with society at large and for growth to be sustainable, particularly in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting global economic upheaval. The publication takes stock of investment policy trends and reforms in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, the Palestinian Authority, and Tunisia, and draws out common challenges, offering suggestions of reform priorities. It considers several dimensions of the policy framework that affect the investment climate and places strong emphasis on how foreign investment can help economies of the region improve their citizens’ lives. The publication serves as reference point, informing policymakers on specific areas as they continue work on leveraging investment to advance inclusive and sustainable growth.

English Also available in: French, Arabic

Executive Summary

Harnessing the benefits of investment for sustainable development in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is more imperative than ever. The health and economic crises precipitated by the Covid-19 pandemic have added to already pressing socio-economic challenges in the region. Global foreign direct investment (FDI) flows fell by 50% in the first half of 2020 compared to the preceding six months, and the OECD predicts world economic output to contract by 4.2% in 2020. The effect on MENA economies could be even greater. FDI inflows to the region declined sharply in 2020, and forecasts suggest a significant economic contraction ahead, with sharp increases to already high unemployment and poverty, as well a rising risk of macro-economic, political and social instability.

English Also available in: French

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