Middle East Green Islands of Economic Growth: Egyptian, Turkish and Iranian Economies during the Covid-19 Pandemic
Purpose: Despite the heavy toll of the Covid-19 pandemic, Egyptian, Iranian and Turkish economies experienced growth in 2020. The article aims to explain this incredible performance. Was it a sign of more profound strength and resilience of each economy or rather the effect of random factors, unlikely to be repeated? Design/Methodology/Approach: The article is based on qualitative and quantitative analysis of the primary (government and international organizations data) and secondary (literature, press reports) data. Descriptive and comparative methods highlight the economic situation before the pandemic shock, the spread of the virus, and government responses. Analytical and deductive methods are used to explain the positive growth indicators. Findings: The surprising resilience of the Egyptian, Iranian and Turkish economies during the pandemic is explained by a mixture of policy responses, structural characteristics of each economy, and pure coincidence. Practical Implications: The policy response was the most important in Turkey, while the other two factors played the leading role in Egypt and Iran. Originality/Value: Despite favorable growth rates, all three countries need to redefine the state's role in the economy and promote manufacturing and export-led growth through selective industrial and technology policies.