Baher Atlam


1 Assessing the Macroeconomic Effects of Fiscal Policy Changes in Egypt: A Bayesian Structural Vector Autoregression Approach

Authors: Walaa Diab, Baher Atlam, Nadia El Nimer


Egypt faces many obvious economic challenges, and it is so clear that a real economic transformation is needed to address those problems, especially after the recent decisions of floating the Egyptian pound and the gradual subsidy cuts that are trying to meet the needed conditions to get the IMF support of (a £12bn loan) for its economic reform program. Following the post-2008 revival of the interest in the fiscal policy and its vital role in speeding up or slowing down the economic growth. Here comes the value of this paper as it seeks to analyze the macroeconomic effects of fiscal policy in Egypt by applying A Bayesian SVAR Approach. The study uses the Bayesian method because it includes the prior information and no relevant information is omitted and so it is well suited for rational, evidence-based decision-making. Since the study aims to define the effects of fiscal policy shocks in Egypt to help the decision-makers in determining the proper means to correct the structural problems in the Egyptian economy, it has to study the period of 1990s economic reform, but unfortunately; the available data is on an annual frequency. Thus, it uses annual time series to study the period 1991: 2005 And quarterly data over the period 2006–2016. It uses a set of six main variables includes government expenditure and net tax revenues as fiscal policy arms affecting real GDP, unemployment, inflation and the interest rate. The study also tries to assess the 'crowding out' effects by considering the effects of government spending and government revenue shocks on the composition of GDP, namely, on private consumption and private investment. Last but not least the study provides its policy implications regarding the needed role of fiscal policy in Egypt in the upcoming economic reform building on the results it concludes from the previous reform program.

Keywords: Taxation, Fiscal Policy, government spending, structural vector autoregression

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