What Have Young People Gained from the Arab Spring?

By Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer of World Bank

13 Apr 2014

Sri Mulyani Indrawati Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer, she was also responsible for the strategic direction and policy framework of the Bank’s Fund for the Poorest, IDA, one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 77 poorest countries

She chaired the World Bank Group’s Advisory Council on Gender and Development. She worked closely with client countries and member states to put operational strategies in place that address new and persistent development challenges in support of the World Bank’s goals of ending poverty and promoting shared prosperity. Indrawati frequently represented the World Bank Group at the G20 .

The Arab Spring was a series of pro-democracy uprisings that enveloped several largely Muslim countries, including Tunisia, Morocco, Syria, Libya, Egypt and Bahrain. The events in these nations generally began in the spring of 2011, which led to the name. However, the political and social impact of these popular uprisings remains significant today, years after many of them ended.


Sri Mulyani Indrawati

This is the area which a lot of things revolution happen this is very important question what have we gained from the arab spring um it is a very difficult question?

Actually I will tell a little bit of my own experience but let me start with the statistic if you talk about youth the world now half of the world population is actually under 25.

You are still relatively young and majority of these youth actually live in Asia, Middle East and Africa we also estimate that, more than 25 of the world youth today is inactive. This term inactive economically doesn’t mean that they don’t have a voice but they have no work, they are not in school, they have no in education they also not in a training so inactive economically doesn’t mean that they don’t have any activity.

Look at the Middle East and North Africa and also in East and Central Europe for the obvious reason about the economic situation there and followed closely by the South Asia with the level of 25 – 35 so the high level of energy inactivity, economic inactivity. The gallup work pool 2013 revealed that more than 60 percent of the youth in Middle East and North Africa they are struggling economically.

48 percent have no confidence in their national government

Policy maker now is raising with a very daunting task of creating job this even in a very normal situation because there are so many thing change in the world technology is one thing this very short product cycle make the job keep changing and the supply chains everywhere making all what you call it one manufacturing activity is no longer contained in one specific country that creates a very challenging task for any policy maker to actually think about.

How we are going to make sure that when the economy is growing it can also create job, have a high growth it doesn’t guarantee that it will reduce poverty and create share prosperity and even creating job and that is the challenge that many policy makers are now facing.

Creating job is a very serious and most difficult challenge. The word bank in the study and World Development Report (WDR) can tell that first have to deal with your economic stability make the foundation right,  build the right institution and then improve your business climate that is the prescription. The challenge is even more because you are just undergoing or you are still in the in this the Arab Spring or the revolution mode.

Changing Regime

I will then share my own experience in this changing regime provide you with the opportunity to build a new one hopefully the better one with a strong foundation when I say the building a new and stronger foundation which is based on transparency, respecting voices, fairness, inclusive and effective accountability and this is mainly we want to build that foundation in order to rebuild the trust which I mentioned  the youth especially not trusting their own national government that’s not easy because even if you are going to have the revolution and changing the regime it doesn’t mean that the legacy issue they are all gone and usually legacy (trust) is the most critical.

So changing regime is one thing just like growth is necessary but not sufficient changing regime may be necessary but not sufficient in really building the new foundation which is new and better  inclusive transparent accountable.

You want to change because it is corrupt authoritarian government, you change into open democratic hopefully transparent, clean then the new government asking you to become finance minister….. shouting from outside is one thing building from inside is another thing. It’s really difficult.

But any policy can make a lot of difference when they are implemented with the capacity of the institution and openness voices is going to make a lot of difference when you are going to provide all the feedback from outside to make sure that your policy is going to achieve the result that you want to achieve and this is why this is very important.

Young People

The young people is very very critical and have a very critical role because they are the one who see that their future at stake if something is not being done or fail or repeating the wrong thing then they are going to be the one who is going to suffer longer and that’s exactly participating

Participation of the young generation or young people is going to be very important now I would really want to convey this message for many policymakers please don’t see the young people as a liability or as a problem they are part of solution

posted by gandatmadi46@yahoo.com



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