International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde (R) participates in the closing ceremony of a high-level conference on Arab economic growth in Marrakesh, Morocco, on Jan. 30, 2018. Christine Lagarde on Tuesday called for the reinvigoration of the economic growth model in the Arab World. (Xinhua/S. Aissa)
RABAT, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- Morocco hosted a high-level conference on exploring efficient policies to spur economic growth and inclusiveness in the Arab world.
Themed "Opportunity for All: Promoting Growth, Jobs, and Inclusiveness in the Arab World," the two-day conference ended on Tuesday in the Moroccan city of Marrakech, with a focus on specific policies needed to gain new sources of growth.
Participants of the conference agreed that growth has not been strong enough to reduce unemployment significantly, as 25 percent of young people in the region are jobless.
Protracted regional conflicts, low commodity prices, weak productivity and poor governance have been identified as main factors gelding back the considerable potential of the region.
In order to boost inclusive economic growth, the conference summarized the priorities of the path to be taken in Marrakech Call for Action, which calls on governments to "Act Now" to pursue a set of actions or reforms.
These reforms promote accountability through increasing transparency and strengthening institutions to improve governance, tackling corruption, and ensuring responsibility for inclusive policies.
The document urged for a more vibrant private sector through improved access to finance and a better business environment with fewer barriers and less red tape.
It also called for leveraging technology and nurture trade to generate new sources of growth, create jobs, and foster prosperity.
Besides, it stressed the importance of building strong safety nets and strengthen legal rights to empower disadvantaged groups, including youth, women, rural populations, and refugees.
It also mentioned the need to ensure opportunities for all citizens, to invest in people and to reform education.
Speaking at the conference, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde said the old model in which the state is the employer of first resort is no longer viable, stressing that the private sector needs to step in and step up.
She insisted that government actions can help to level the playing field for private firms by combating corruption, increasing competition, and taking advantage of global trade and new technologies.
Lagarde said that another key priority in boosting economic growth relates to integrating youth, women, rural populations, and refugees through better education and active labor market policies.