Discussion Paper

No. 2017-4 | February 07, 2017
Sources of economic growth in MENA countries: a Harrod-neutral technological progress identification framework

Abstract

This study answers the question: What are the results of assuming the nature of technological progress as Harrod-neutral in growth accounting for the Middle East and North African (MENA) countries? Accordingly, this study contributes to the debate over whether the sources of economic growth stem from technological progress, capital or human capital accumulation. The study finds evidence that economic growth stems from capital accumulation rather than total factor productivity for the MENA countries, except Israel and Saudi Arabia. The authors concluded that assuming the nature of technological progress as Harrod-neutral in growth accounting for the MENA countries does not have a critical impact on the results.

JEL Classification:

O30, O47, O57, C22

Assessment

  • Downloads: 170

Links

Cite As

Acikgöz Senay, Mohamed Sami Ben Ali, and Merter Mert (2017). Sources of economic growth in MENA countries: a Harrod-neutral technological progress identification framework. Economics Discussion Papers, No 2017-4, Kiel Institute for the World Economy. http://www.economics-ejournal.org/economics/discussionpapers/2017-4


Comments and Questions


Anonymous - Referee Report 1
March 14, 2017 - 15:31

The paper studies the sources of economic growth in MENA countries. In particular, following a growth accounting framework, it aims at measuring the contribution of human and physical capital accumulation and of technological progress to economic growth. The question addressed in the paper is potentially interesting, especially for the focus ...[more]

... on MENA countries that have been under-investigated in the literature so far. However, I think that the paper has several flows.
The paper is poorly crafted and edited and the empirical analysis is not properly explained and discussed. Moreover, it not clear how the paper relates to the existing literature.
Regarding the empirical analysis, authors use an Autoregressive Distributed Lag (ARDL)-Bounds testing approach to examine the long-run relationship between physical capital stock per worker, real GDP per worker, and human capital per worker. This approach is not standard in this filed and the authors do not motivate the choice of this methodology and do not mention other papers that used this method in a growth accounting framework.
Also, the data used in the analysis are poorly described: For example, what is the period considered? Do they have the same number of years for all countries? How do countries differ in terms of long run trend in GDP growth? I think that some descriptive statistics are essential.
I think that the authors should work more on the discussion of the results and streamline the main findings of the paper. For example, their main conclusion is that economic growth in the region arises form accumulation of capital instead of total factor productivity, but as far as I understand this result comes from six countries out of fifteen. In this case, I think the authors should downplay this statement and try to interpret why this finding holds for some countries and not for others. Also,
Finally, I think that a language editor should be employed to go through the paper’s exposition and tighten the presentation.


Anonymous - Referee Report 2
March 17, 2017 - 10:08

See attached file