United Arab Economies
BY: LOUIE ZAWAHRI
What if the Arab World unite its effort to form a kind of Economic Unity as the one worked in Europe?
My concern is the emphasis of knowledge, responsible government, agricultural development, specialization, technological improvements, and free trade among the Arab states in the Middle East.
Economic growth and development is eminent within the region, it is a realm that may be conceivable as we approach the next century. While we take heed of economic growth and development in our present and past parts of the Twentieth Century.
2- Industrial nations and Arabs
Since it is evident that wealthy countries will invest in regions generating the highest returns, and it is also evident that computer, telecommunication, and many other forms of advancements in technology have led to a new revolution, we can conclude that new process technology will lead in the next century. The essence of process technology is growth and expansion, where world wide sourcing is possible. Industrial nations with their multinational corporations are willing and able to build more production facilities in underdeveloped nations. In order for companies to invest in these nations institutional changes will be a priority, and as far as the Arab Nations are concerned integration and inter country reform are first and foremost. With existing debt, lenders can not rely on firms in indebt Arab nations to repay the loans, therefor small companies in the Middle East do not have the same advantage as small companies in industrialized nations do. Arab economic unity creates progress, change, and technological development in science, training, education, development, and growth. The changes in economics are required all around the Middle East, success forces cooperation among nations who control the largest markets within the Arab World. As negotiations are under way, the rules will lay the foundation for each Arab Nation in the domestic and external economy. How inflows and outflow will be conducted, how the currencies will be determined, and the rules of economic integration will be written by those who dominate the largest markets. Those who resist economic change in the region, will soon find it the only option for survival, since economic unity creates a greater force than that emerging out of political motivation.
3- Need of Change
For change to occur weather economic or other, problems arise, and solutions must be implemented, the search for new and improved economic policies assist in period of economic hardship or expansion. Japan for example, became an economic super power , in a matter of 40-50 years, after much of its industrial and agriculture land was distroyed in W.W.II. How? It is in the people's commitment, unity, principles of discipline that gave rise to their business philosophy of constant improvement. In other words, you will never reach perfection since there are modifications yet to be made from all aspects of life economical, political, social, and so on. Focus for a moment , on the richest nations that have excelled in agriculture as well as in manufacturing, their techniques in cultivation, strategic planing , and implementing of policy, were generally better than developing countries. It is important that the obstacles to economic progress be removed. Our attitude about advanced industry must change devoting attention to programs of reform, adopting economic policies for successful operation of both the domestic and the external economies; new operators of shops, business, factories, innovations, and investments would flourish in the Middle East. The incentive to accumulate wealth will encourage people to stay in their own countries, invest their time, labor, and money to pursue a higher standard of living for themselves and the nations that are truly their birth right. In order to achieve such result I recommend a few areas of reform that must be taken into consideration: free trade among the U A E nations , government activity in public education , public works, currency progress, moderate taxation, and a moderate import and export tax on products sold or purchased outside of the UAE for the purposes of revenue and development.
4- Advantages on Arab side
While it may be true that the UAE nations are poor, essentially agrarian, economically underdeveloped, it is also true that united together these countries may be relatively advanced. The greater advantage is the fact that the UAE nations do not differ much in area, population, language, state of economic and political development, class structure, geography, mobility, and so on. The only differences that exist are inter-country differences in policies advocated or adopted, in attitudes toward the regulation of trade, and in capacity to carry out particular programs. Of these bases the degrees of political or national unity are especially important. Thus, we may state that the UAE could accomplish the following goals: First, developed or industrialized regions or centers; Second, a domestic region remote from urban areas, lying beyond metropolitan or cultural centers, where agricultural products and raw materials may be produced; Third, an external region lying inland, where domestic products can be sold and goods can be purchased in variation. We must seek the expansion of industry and develop the agricultural sector with exploitation of the raw materials at a rate that will sustain the growth of an industrial sector. If this could be accomplished our engineers, lawyers, doctors, technicians, talented entrapeneuers would invest their own labor and time in the region. In other words, instead of importing labor and exporting our people, unity will eventually develop a well organized, economically developed region. Furthermore, for economic development to occur the production of an agricultural surplus that supports the industrial sector is a requirement, and as population grows technical improvements are introduced, that are applied to agriculture. Therefore a small part of the population would be required to produce food.
5- Example of USA
As in the United States today, only three percent of the population is involved in agriculture. The US has the capability to produce food for its self as well as feed a large portion of the world. This is possible because of new knowledge and technologically advanced equipment with strict economic policies. We in the Middle East, while using the US economy as a model, achieving industrially advanced nations is possible and necessary for our future in the region. Organization and efficiency are key elements in the growth of an economy. This essential theory must be the back bone of decision makers, since the welfare of the people depends on the market mechanism as well as the goals of its leaders. How they organize and efficiently allocate the available resources, will determine the progress needed that would affect economic growth and development. The power of production is realized where productivity in agriculture is raised. UAE nations unite so that they may share their resources, wealth, ideas, and progress, Arab people can reach a level of global competition, similar to European, North American, And Far Eastern nations. Without Unity there could be no efficient economic growth.
6- Achieving our objective
I believe the law of comparative advantage provides the principles in achieving the objective of economic growth among the UAE nations. The adaptation of free trade would increase product quality, lower prices, and increase investment, investment creates greater capacity in the economy as it generates income that leads to expansion in the industrial sector. Agricultural improvements will build the foundation for an industrial base and our Arab Nations would experience a gradual increase in capital, leading to growth in real income. The expansion of profit with savings, as well as an adequate equal distribution of income generates sufficient production of manufactured goods. We must be careful not to tax capital, wages, or raw material, this will bring about a decrease in the rate of growth, the living standard of the poor, as well as the rich, due to consumption at the expense of capital accumulation. In other words, as the money wage rises profits will tend to decline, decreasing the incentive to invest. Continual improvements in technology and quality would allow for productivity of capital to increase as supply increases. The increase in demand for capital will raise demand for human power (labor), enough labor then would be required to build capital, which tends to decrease long-run unemployment due to technological advances. If the UAE nations are to take advantage of their potential reforms, adjustments are a requirement in the following areas: Free competition, price stability, free trade, resource distribution. Comparative advantage in manufacturing will result in growth by the improvements in technology and efficient distribution of labor. Gains from international specialization would increase domestic growth, free trade brings efficiency both domestically and internationally. The progress will be rapid especially for developing economies like the UAE. The efficient contraction of the UAE would free large portions of savings and capital formation from developed agriculture that contributes to economic growth. Education is a very important factor up dating the present planning and strategies to achieve the necessary skills needed in the fields of science, art, medicine, and so on. 7- Conclusion Finally, there is a great opportunity for the Middle Eastern Countries to unite. Economic unity will lead to strength in the region, and it also gives Arab States an edge in global competitiveness. Only United Arab Economies can cooperate in a competitive game that is rapidly changing the structure of economic thinking. This superior discipline may be reevaluated and modified as justified events wry the lives of people in the Middle East and the World.