Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

New Liberalism, Fate of Development in the Arab World | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Gyrocopters fly over Dubai during the World Air Games 2015, United Arab Emirates December 9, 2015. REUTERS/Karim Sahib/Pool

Riyadh- Economic development is a decisive topic for Arab countries and communities, especially given the current tough conditions. The success of development is the key for a promising future and the failure of development has disastrous consequences.

Most Arab countries have followed through four decades the new liberalism policies in their economic and development plans. Although these policies failed, Arabs seem to stick to them with great enthusiasm.

The new liberalism launches from its belief that reducing the government’s role and increasing that of the private sector in economic activity is the way to achieve qualified performance and economic growth. New liberalism development modal adopts a package of economic and political policies that aim at liberating the economy and increasing competition plus limiting the government’s interference along with increasing its revenues and decreasing its expenses.

Supporters of these strategies see that they urge growth of economy and stability of the balance of payments. Critics, however, believe that these policies are biased to extreme capitalism.

Development is an urgent topic in the Arab world and it should not remain dependent on the new liberalism policies especially that the mandatory implementation of these policies led to the deterioration of Arab communities and countries’ conditions.

The main problem of current liberalism is that it rejects revision and criticism and this is actually hurdling its progress.

New liberalism always blames circumstances and reality but never considers modifying its policies to go along with these circumstances. Hence, the best way to accomplish Arab development is to resist the new liberalism pressure and temptation and to think out of the box to pave the way for new development viewpoints, through restless efforts to develop comprehensive development models that fit in the Arab world and serve its interests.