Volker Perthes (ed.)

Scenarios for Syria: Socio-Economic and Political Choices

Baden-Baden Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft, December 1997, 130 Pages ISBN 3-7890-5722-3 [AMP, Bd. 45]

All countries in the Middle East are facing the challenges of socio-economic change. Syria, as a central element of the regional system, has come under increasing pressure to adjust. Structural economic reform has been singled out as the most urgent need for the years to come, but there are other issues too which Syria will have to deal with if it wants to maintain its position in a more globalized regional environment. These issues include the role of the private sector, managerial skills, basic education, population growth and job creation as well as water supply or the problems of such thorny questions as political liberalisation, relations with Lebanon, and the peace process. Syria will not benefit from a protracted stalemate in the peace process. Rather, the sooner Israel and Syria settle their conflict, the easier it will be for Syria to cope with the economic and socio-political challenges of an emerging new Middle Eastern division of labour.

The authors of the volume, both Syrian and European experts on Syria, provide in-depth analyses of the issues mentioned, developing, where possible, scenarios of Syria's future.

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