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Related blogs to Rim Berahab

Is the EU's Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism a Threat for Developing Countries?

Rim Berahab | Posted : January 13, 2022

As part of the lengthy fight against climate change, the European Union (EU) has introduced a Border Carbon Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM), among its "Fit for 55" package, intended to deliver the EU's intermediate target of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 55% from 1990 levels by 2030. This proposal is deemed "bold, complicated, even controversial." If implemented, it will undoubtedly disrupt trade relations between the EU and its main partners and transform energy dynamics in the Atlantic basin. The CBAM aims to introduce a carbon price to imported products inside the EU equivalent to the carbon price applied to products manufactured by EU producers under the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS). It "would require importers to purchase carbon emissions certificates for imports that the EU determines are not produced under emissions standards similar to those of the EU." While the sentiment behind the CBAM is commendable - several countries have indeed welcomed the proposal - others have expressed concerns about its application, noting several issues that may arise from it.

Decarbonizing the economy: a view from the South

Rim Berahab | Posted : November 02, 2021

This article was initially published on in EnglishFrench and Spanish.

How can the world achieve higher levels of decarbonization without compromising economic development? This column explores the case of Morocco, a developing country committed to contributing to the global effort against climate change. Assessment of possible decarbonization pathways suggests that particular attention should be paid to expanded penetration of renewable energy to meet future electricity demand. Financial and non-financial incentives will be needed to reduce the economic cost of the transition.

Un chemin semé d'embûches pour éliminer les subventions des carburants au Nigeria

Rim Berahab | Posted : March 31, 2021

Depuis la découverte des ressources pétrolières du Nigeria en 1956, le secteur pétrolier a progressivement revêtu une importance considérable, jusqu'à devenir le principal moteur de l'économie du pays : le pétrole brut est le premier poste d'exportations (figure 1) ainsi que le principal pourvoyeur en réserves de devises et de recettes fiscales pour le gouvernement fédéral nigérian (figure 2). Cependant, malgré son importance, le secteur pétrolier n'a pas élargi la base productive de l'économie nigériane. En effet, l'industrie pétrolière contribue à moins de 10 % du produit intérieur brut (PIB) du pays (figure 3) et ne procure pas un volume important de main-d’œuvre. Selon les estimations de l'Organisation internationale du travail (OIT), cette dépendance précaire de l’Etat au secteur constitue ce qui semble être un frein à la croissance d'autres secteurs tels que l'industrie manufacturière et l'agriculture. Elle a également été préjudiciable à la croissance économique elle-même, en raison de la volatilité des prix du pétrole brut sur le marché international, laissant le Nigeria vulnérable à toute crise majeure.

La transition énergétique à l’épreuve de la Covid-19

Rim Berahab | Posted : September 24, 2020

Profondément préoccupée par les niveaux alarmants de propagation et de sévérité du Coronavirus, l’Organisation mondiale de la Santé (OMS) annonce, le 11 mars 2020, que la Covid-19 a atteint le niveau de pandémie. Pour contenir la propagation du virus, la vie sociale et économique est pratiquement paralysée : Selon l’Agence internationale de l’Energie (AIE), environ un tiers de la population mondiale a fait l'objet de confinement complet ou partiel entre février et la mi-mai, et quasiment toute la main-d’œuvre mondiale a été touchée d’une manière ou d’une autre par les mesures de confinement.

Energy Markets Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic: What Do We Know So Far?

Rim Berahab | Posted : April 06, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is evolving into an unprecedented international crisis, with serious consequences for human health and economic activity. While it is still too early to accurately determine the magnitude and persistence of the economic impact of the pandemic, a short-term assessment can be made. This short opinion focuses on the implications for energy markets. The rapid decline in crude oil prices has raised concerns on both the demand and supply sides, making the outlook for this market very uncertain. Meanwhile, despite a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in some of the hardest-hit regions, which is very likely to be unsustainable, low fossil-fuel prices could potentially stall significant progress in the development of clean-energy technologies, thus hampering energy-transition efforts.

Can Public and Private Partnerships Bridge the Gap in Infrastructure Investments? The Case of Developing Asia

Rim Berahab | Posted : March 07, 2019

A well-functioning modern infrastructure is essential for social and economic development. It has the power to change the quality of life of populations as well as the prospects of businesses. Despite developing Asia’s remarkable economic performances since the 1980s, the region still faces important difficulties in delivering adequate infrastructure services. “Over 400 million Asians do not have electricity access; 300 million live without safe drinking water and 1.5 billion without basic sanitation” (ADB, 2019). As public funds and Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) will not be enough to meet the region’s rising demand for infrastructure, cooperating with the private sector, through Public and Private Partnerships (PPPs) could, in theory, close this financing gap.

Is Digitalization the Future of Energy in Africa?

Rim Berahab | Posted : September 05, 2018

As the world is shifting away from conventional fossil fuels towards renewable energy sources, the power industry is starting to invest more in sustainable clean energy installations rather than the traditional large-scale infrastructures, which rely mainly on oil and coal. 

Besides its environmental benefits, this shift to renewables is very likely to benefit economic growth as well. A recent study of the International Renewable Energy Agency shows that, indeed, doubling the share of renewables in the energy mix by 2030 would lead to a rise of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) up to 1.1 percent. It would also improve global welfare by 3.7 per cent and support the creation of over 24 million jobs in the sector all over the world.

Infrastructure investments in Africa: A need for a "big push"

Rim Berahab | Posted : January 09, 2018

The need for infrastructure is enhanced by the willingness of citizens to live decently through an increased access to electricity, water, roads and education. The high cost of transactions in Africa highlights the urgency to upgrade infrastructure, support the expanding economies and foster regional integration. Adequate infrastructure provision is thus considered a key prerequisite for the continent to achieve the intended objective of economic growth- and trade liberalization in particular (Ajakaiye & Ncube, 2010). From an economic perspective, public investment, particularly in infrastructure, is rather a means than an end in itself. It aims to increase private capital formation leading to wealth creation and prosperity (Agénor, Bayraktar & El Aynaoui, 2005). Several empirical studies have revealed the positive spillover effects of public infrastructure capital on the demand and supply for private inputs and outputs in the case of some industrialized countries (Demetriades & Manuneas, 2000). Conversely, in Latin America for instance, the lack of investment in infrastructure during the 1980s and 1990s, particularly in roads, telecommunications, and power generation capacity, had detrimental impacts on productivity, production costs and private investments, which in turn undermined output growth (Calderón & Servén, 2002).