Crony Capitalism in the Middle East: Business and Politics from Liberalization to the Arab Spring

ISBN : 9780198799870

Ishac Diwan; Adeel Malik; Izak Atiyas
528 ページ
156 x 234 mm

The popular uprisings in 2011 that overthrew Arab dictators were also a rebuke to crony capitalism, diverted against both rulers and their allied businessmen who monopolize all economic opportunities. While the Middle East has witnessed a growing nexus between business and politics in the wake of liberalization, little is discussed about the nature of business cronies, the sectors in which they operate, the mechanisms used to favour them, and the possible impact of such crony relations on the region's development. Combining inputs from leading scholars in the field, Crony Capitalism in the Middle East: Business and Politics from Liberalization to the Arab Spring presents a wealth of empirical evidence on the form and function of this aspect of the region. Crony Capitalism in the Middle East is unique in both its empirical focus and comparative scale. Analysis in individual chapters is empirically grounded and based on fine-grained data on the business activities of politically connected actors furnishing, for the first time, information on the presence, numerical strength, and activities of politically connected entrepreneurs. It also substantially enhances our understanding of the mechanisms used to privilege connected businesses, and their possible impact on undermining the growth of firms in the region. It offers a major advance on our prior knowledge of Middle Eastern political economy, and constitutes a distinct contribution to the global literature on crony capitalism and the politics of development. The book will be an essential resource for students, researchers, and policymakers alike.


Adeel Malik, Izak Atiyas, and Ishac Diwan: Introduction: Crony Capitalism in the Middle East: What Do We Know and Why Does it Matter?
1 Steffen Hertog: Is There an Arab Variety of Capitalism?
Part I: Impact of cronyism on growth
2 Ishac Diwan, Philip Keefer, and Marc Schiffbauer: Pyramid Capitalism: Evidence from Egypt
3 Izak Atiyas, Ozan Bakis, and Esra Gurakar: Anatolian Tigers and the Emergence of the Devout Bourgeoisie in the Turkish Manufacturing Industry
4 Ishac Diwan and Jamal Ibrahim Haidar: Do Political Connections Reduce Job Creation? Evidence from Lebanon
5 Mohamed Said Saadi: Moroccan Cronyism: Facts, Mechanisms and Impact
Part II: Mechanisms of privilege
6 Leila Baghdadi, Hassan Arouri, and Bob Rijkers: How Do Dictators Get Rich? State Capture in Ben Ali's Tunisia
7 Adeel Malik and Ferdinand Eibl: The Politics of Trade Protection in North Africa
8 Esra Gurakar and Tuba Bircan: Political Connections and Public Procurement in Turkey
9 Steve Monroe: Boundaries of Protectionism: Ethnic Politics and Crony Capitalism in Jordan
Part III: Financial markets and cronyism
10 Cagatay Birkan and Orkun Saka: Elections and Economic Cycles: What Can We Learn from the Recent Turkish Experience?
11 Mohamed Oubenal: Crony Interlockers and the Centrality of Banks in Morocco
12 Jad Chaaban: I've got the Power: Mapping Connections between Lebanon's Banking Sector and the Ruling Class.
13 Ali Coskun, Serhat Cevikel, and Vedat Akgiray: State and Capital Markets in the Middle East
14 Kevan Harris: Iran's Commanding Heights: Conglomerate Ownership in the Islamic Republic
15 Ishac Diwan: The Future of the Private Sector in an Age of Uncertainty


Ishac Diwan is currently a Visiting Professor at SIPA - Columbia University. He holds the chair of the Socio-Economy of the Arab World at Paris Sciences et Lettres, a consortium of Parisian universities, and has held teaching positions at Harvard Kennedy School, Dauphine University, and New York University. He worked at the Work Bank for many years in the Research Complex, the Middle East and Africa departments, and the World Bank Institute. His work on international finance and on the Middle East is widely published. Professor Diwan directs the Political Economy program of the Economic Research Forum, an association of Middle East social scientists.; Adeel Malik is Globe Fellow in the Economies of Muslim Societies at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies and a University Research Lecturer in Development Economics at the University of Oxford. He is also a Research Fellow in Economics at St. Peter's College, Oxford. Malik is trying to develop a broader research lens on political economy of the Middle East. His research articles have been published in Journal of Development Economics, Oxford Economic Papers, World Development, and Modern Asian Studies. His research on Middle Eastern political economy has featured in the CNN, New York Times, Project Syndicate, and Foreign Affairs. ; Izak Atiyas is an Associate Professor of Economics at Sabanci University, Istanbul, Turkey. He has worked as a senior economist at the World Bank in the Private Sector Development Department and at Bilkent University as visiting Assistant Professor of Economics. He has been with Sabanci University since 1998, and is also the Director of TUSiAD-Sabanci University Competitiveness Forum. His research areas include productivity, industrial policy, policy, political economy, regulation of network industries, and privatization.