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Generalized Trust and Economic Growth: The Nexus in MENA Countries

Rania S. Miniesy and Mariam AbdelKarim
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Rania S. Miniesy: Department of Economics, The British University in Egypt, El Sherouk City 11837, Egypt
Mariam AbdelKarim: Department of Economics, The British University in Egypt, El Sherouk City 11837, Egypt

Economies, 2021, vol. 9, issue 1, 1-22

Abstract: This study mainly examines the relationship between generalized/horizontal/social trust and economic growth in countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, considering the substantial decline in their trust values since 2005. The study utilizes a multiple linear regression model based on panel data comprising 104 countries over the period from 1999 to 2020. Trust data were obtained from the last four waves of the World Values Survey (WVS). A Pooled Ordinary Least Squares (POLS) estimation technique was used, and interaction terms between trust and several dummy variables were employed. The results show an overall positive and significant relationship between trust and economic growth in the general model and for all country classifications, except for MENA, where the overall relationship is negative but almost negligible. Trust has the highest impact on growth in transition economies, followed in order by developing Asia, developed, developing/Sub-Saharan Africa, developing America, and then MENA countries. Further investigations reveal that the overall negative/reversed effect of trust on economic growth in MENA is only during waves 6 and 7, where the coefficients are sizable.

Keywords: generalized trust; horizontal trust; social trust; social capital; economic growth; democracy; MENA; developing countries; Arab Spring; WVS (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E F I J O Q (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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