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Middle East and North Africa

After the nuclear agreement: What’s next on the economic front for Iranians?

Amin Mohseni-Cheraghlou's picture
Also available in: Français | العربية
 Thomas Koch l

The nuclear agreement between Iran and the “P5+1” has finally reached adoption stage - and there is much excitement on economic fronts. Multinationals from around the world are queuing up to gain access to Iran’s market of more than 70 million people, many of whom have an appetite for Western goods!

Tunisian civil society: from revolutionaries to peace keepers

Donia Jemail's picture
Also available in: العربية | Français

Avenue Habib Bourguiba, Tunis. Nataliya Hora l Shutterstock

Who would have thought, on January 14th 2011, when the Tunisian people took to the streets shouting “Degage!”  or “Get out!” to former dictator Ben Ali’s regime, that they put  in motion a series of events that would lead to a group civil society organizations  winning  the  Nobel Peace Prize four years later. 

Conflict and development: the World Bank Group’s new strategy for the Middle East and North Africa region

Omer Karasapan's picture
Also available in: Français | العربية
Damascus,Syria - Volodymyr Borodin l

In February 2012, I wrote a blog about the relevance to the Arab revolutions that had swept the region of  the UN’s then recently unveiled “Resilient People, Resilient Planet: A Future worth Choosing,” which called for the eventual adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Now three and a half years later, at the United Nations General Assembly in New York last week, , world leaders endorsed the SDGs, an ambitious agenda that aims to end poverty, promote prosperity and protect the environment. 

Think regional, act local: a new approach for Maghreb countries

Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly's picture
Also available in: العربية | Français
 Pichugin Dmitry l

Every organization, no matter how large, needs to pause occasionally and take a good, hard look at itself. It is vital for measuring the gap between intention and achievement, and charting a new course. For the World Bank Group (WBG), this “hard look” took the form of a gathering for three days in Marrakech, Morocco where we listened to voices from the ground, debated and reached consensus on an action plan for a renewed path for the Maghreb Team.

Much ado about nothing? The economic impact of refugee ‘invasions’

Massimiliano Calì's picture
Also available in: العربية | Français
Stranded Refugees and Migrants camp in Hungary - Spectral-Design l

To those European Union citizens who think that the ongoing “refugee invasion” into the EU is quickly becoming economically unsustainable: If the experience of Syria’s neighbors is anything to go by, you may need to think again.

Does legal aid reduce poverty?

Paul Prettitore's picture
Also available in: العربية | Français
 Emad Abd El Hady l World Bank

Last week I attended a gathering of legal aid providers, a somewhat informal group mostly from rich countries but with a slowly growing number of developing country participants. Legal aid services—covering public information and awareness, group and individual counseling, and representation by a lawyer—are generally delivered free of charge to the poor and vulnerable, so they can better understand their rights and the procedures to enforce them, and improve their access to formal justice sector services (those provided by courts, other dispute resolution bodies, and lawyers). 

My young children give me hope

Ahmad Owda's picture
Also available in: العربية | Français
 Majdi Al-Najjar l World Bank

With the start of the new school year, my children are eager to get back into their classrooms, like all students after a long summer vacation. Perhaps, they feel as they grow and advance to the next level that their dreams are getting closer.  

Piles of garbage, blackouts, water shortages welcome students back to school

Dima Krayem's picture
Also available in: العربية
John Donelly / World Bank

A dismal garbage disposal crisis, long, unregulated power cuts and water shortages, coupled with deepening financial hardship, have exposed a ruling political class as being too busy squabbling in their own, narrow self-interest to worry about the pressing needs of Lebanon’s other citizens. In despair, citizens have taken to the streets in protests to demand their basic rights—a myriad of social, political and financial suffering, topped by mounds of garbage. The protests have all but overshadowed another imminent crisis as the end of September’s “back to school” season looms, and the impact of about 1.5 million refugees—a third of them children and adolescents—poses yet another challenge.