Volume 23 (2012) / Issue 2
This paper explores whether business law reforms in Arab countries have contributed to their economic development, business legal environment and integration into the international market. Using Jordan as an example, it explores the role of law in economic development in the region. The analysis finds that the Jordanian legal reform has led the country to participate in international markets, by incorporating international legal norms into its own legislation. This legislative reform has also contributed to economic development, allowing Jordan to join the World Trade Organization and enter into Free Trade Agreements, such as those with the United States and the European Union. In addition, the paper shows that other Arab countries, such as Saudi Arabia, that reformed their business regulations led them to join the World Trade Organization and to be ranked amongst the top 25 countries worldwide on their business ease. In contrast, other Arab countries which lack law and its enforcement have been reported to be the worst places in the Middle East to do business. As a result this paper suggests that the Arab Middle Eastern countries should continue in reforming their legal system to make it less rigid for business, to create more jobs, increase productivity and ultimately achieve economic growth.
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