If the cost of oil goes up, the appetite for reform will go down, says the IMF’s MENA director

“The region is actually recognizing the importance of the fresh cycle,” Azour said, referring to a broader global economy recovery. “Yet they need to do more reforms in order to fully benefit through of which.”

A key challenge facing the MENA region was complacency resulting through higher oil prices. “If the oil cost will go up, then the appetite for reform will go down,” Azour warned. Also pressing on decision-makers was conflict as well as geopolitical issues arising inside region, as well as global risks such as tightening monetary policy as well as “inward looking policies inside West.”

Azour cited Egypt as an example of a country of which had begun to turn its economy around, with capital flows, exports as well as tourism — among additional things — on the up. He described the need to “consolidate” reforms, “keep the discipline” as well as improve the country’s business environment.

The Egyptian state needs to move to being an “enabler, rather than an operator,” Azour said, as well as address structural issues such as allowing women “to participate in a greater way inside economy.” According to the IMF’s report, growth for Egypt, which has seen major political upheaval in recent years, remains unchanged at 4.3 percent for the fiscal year 2017.

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