An Empirical Analysis of the Determinants of Economic Growth in the Western Balkans

Besnik Taip Fetai 1 , Besime Fekri Mustafi 2  and Ariana Besnik Fetai 2
  • 1 South East European University, Tetovo, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, , Tetovo, Macedonia
  • 2 South East European University, , Tetovo, Macedonia


The objective of this paper is to assess the main determinants and the policies that affect economic growth in the Western Balkan over the period 1994 to 2015. It employs techniques such as pooled OLS, fixed and random effects model, and Hausman-Taylor model with instrumental variables (IV). The study shows evidence of conditional convergence, indicating the need for an upward move in the steady state level. The results show that foreign direct investments, gross savings and domestic credit to the private sector have a positive effect on per capita growth. On the other hand, initial level of per capita growth, corruption, unemployment, and general government final consumption, have a negative relationship with per capita growth. The study also shows a puzzling result, that schooling is not a significant factor for growth in Western Balkans. The study also highlights the relevance of attracting more foreign direct investments and reduction in corruption.

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