Is the impact of the Economic Diversification on Economic Growth Symmetric or Asymmetric? Evidence from Saudi Arabia

  •  Mohamed Ali Houfi    


This paper presents our investigation of the impact of economic diversification on economic growth in Saudi Arabia for the 1990-2018 period. To this end, we used linear and nonlinear error-correction models (i.e., the ARDL, Pesaran et al. (2001), and NARDL, Shin et al. (2014), models) that are suited to capture the symmetric and asymmetric effects of economic diversification on economic growth based on the Solow model. As a measure of economic diversification, we used the Herfindahl index. In the linear and the nonlinear specifications, our results show that, economic diversification has a positive effect on the economic growth only in the long term. Furthermore, using the Wald test, the symmetric hypothesis in this relationship is not rejected, indicating that economic growth responds symmetrically to positive and negative changes in economic diversification. Our results also reveal that Saudi Arabia had relative success in achieving its goal of attaining a degree of economic diversification and enhancing its economic growth.

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