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Questo articolo è stato pubblicato il 31 maggio 2011 alle ore 14:44.


Success for these countries will depend on respect for individual rights and the rule of law – including rights to one’s property and one’s profits. It will also depend on a popular willingness to tolerate differences and accept competition – you could lose your job to someone judged more promising.

The religious intolerance that has flared up in Egypt is a warning flag that the spirit of toleration – of so be it and mind your own business – is underdeveloped in the country. Violence and discrimination against minorities and competitors could distract the region from what should be its main priority: economic rebirth.

It is not clear that Tunisia and Egypt can carry out the economic transformation that they need. For that reason, it is all the more important that foreign help for the region be technical and aimed at removing barriers to jobs and rewarding careers.

Edmund Phelps, the 2006 Nobel laureate in economics, is the founding director of the Center on Capitalism and Society at Columbia University. This article first appeared in Le Monde.

Copyright: Project Syndicate,


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