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Demographics in MENA countries : a major driver for economic growth

Auteur : Forouheshfar Yeganeh, El Mekkaoui Najat, d’Albis Hippolyte
Année de Publication : 2019
Type : Rapport
Thème : Repères du développement économique

Résumé/Sommaire :

MENA region is undergoing rapid demographic transition, where 50% of the population is under the age 25 and high youth unemployment rates are argued to be one of the main sources of political instability. Fighting youth exclusion from work is one of the main challenges in the region. In this paper we evaluate the economic impact of the demographic transition for selected countries which experience different speeds of transition, namely : Iran, Morocco and Egypt.
The impact of demographic shift on the evolution of human capital stock and physical capital stock, has been highlighted by the literature. Since financial markets play a crucial role to allocate capital and channel the funds to the productive sector, it is hence fundamental to take into account the role of the financial markets in the growth process associated with demographic change.
We have developed a general equilibrium overlapping generations model with a cost for capital mobilisation as a proxy for financial markets’ efficiency.
We have found that the demographic shift will be an important driver for growth in the upcoming decades. Furthermore, our results show that a more efficient financial sector leads to better economic performance. Specifically, youth are the primary beneficiaries : an increase in the financial sector efficiency can reduce up to 8 percentage points of the youngest age group unemployment.

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