Although high oil prices meant that oil-exporting countries in the Middle East and North Africa were relatively protected by the financial crisis that gripped the Eurozone and other parts of the world, a report by the IMF, has suggested that the region is still in for a bumpy ride as oil-importing countries bore the brunt of higher prices combined with political unrest and regime changes.
According to the Regional Economic Outlook Update for the Middle East North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan region (MENAP) , one area of real concern is unemployment, particularly in the Arab Spring states.
Dr Nasser Saidi, Chief Economist at the Dubai International Financial Centre, where the report was launched, said that job creation was the top priority.
“Over 20 years, we need to create 100m jobs, as many as have been created to date since the 1950s,” he said. ”We need to change the game into a growth-lifting strategy.”
We’re really looking forward to hearing more on this subject from Dr Saidi when he takes part in our Breakfast Club discussion at the RAC on 1st June.