This chapter includes the following articles.
The 2003-13 royal initiative, the region’s 10-year economic development programme introduced in 2003, has transformed the Oriental’s economy, placing a strong emphasis on local industry, value-added agricultural production, application of new technologies and a reduction in economic reliance on Algeria. The region has many advantages, including its Mediterranean coastline, a fertile agricultural environment in the north, diverse topography and a young population. However, the region still has a number of hurdles to overcome. The authorities still have a long way to go to reduce the role of the informal economy, for instance, and support the growth of SMEs at a local level. The region is nonetheless well positioned to see a significant increase in growth. Considerable public investment in infrastructure over the last decade has benefitted companies throughout the construction, public works and building materials sectors. With improved infrastructure, new turnkey zones for potential investors, and a spate of investments in the service and social sectors, the scope for growth in the Oriental region is significant.