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For other uses, see Mena (disambiguation)
  Commonly accepted as MENA countries.
  Sometimes also considered part of the region.

The term MENA is an English-language acronym referring to the Middle East and North Africa region. The term MENA covers an extensive region, extending from Morocco to Iran, including all Middle Eastern Mashriq and Maghreb countries. The term is roughly synonymous with the term the Greater Middle East.

The MENA acronym is often used in academia, military planning, disaster relief, and business writing.[1][2]

Due to the geographic ambiguity and Eurocentric nature of the term "Middle East", many people prefer use of the term WANA (West Asia and North Africa)[3] or the less common NAWA (North Africa-West Asia).[4]

The population of the MENA region at its least extent is considered to be around 381 million people, about 6% of the total world population.

List of countries[edit]

MENA has no standardized definition; different organizations define the region as consisting of different territories. The following is a list of commonly included countries and territories.[1][5]

Sometimes also included in broader definitions of MENA:[6][7]


The MENA region has vast reserves of petroleum and natural gas that make it a vital source of global economic stability. According to the Oil and Gas Journal (January 1, 2009), the MENA region has 60% of the world's oil reserves (810.98 billion barrels (128.936 km3)) and 45% of the world's natural gas reserves ( 2,868,886 billion cubic feet (81,237.8 km3) ).[8]

As of 2011, 8 of the 12 OPEC nations are within the MENA region.

Other terms[edit]


From April 2013, the International Monetary Fund started using a new analytical region called MENAP (Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan), which adds Afghanistan and Pakistan to MENA countries.[9] Now MENAP is prominent economic grouping in IMF reports.[10] [11]


The term MENAT has been used to include Turkey in the list of MENA countries.[12] [13]

Instability in the region[edit]

Due to rich resources, mainly oils and gas, adding with its location between three continents (Asia, Africa and Europe), the MENA region has been at conflict since the collapse of the Ottoman Empire: notably the creation of Israel, a Jewish state among the Arab countries; rise of terrorism; Israeli-Palestinian conflict; Iran-Saudi Arabia proxy conflict; conflict between Berbers and Arabs. It comes to its highest peaks at the 21st century: the U.S. intervention of Iraq at 2003; the rise of ISIS; Arab Spring that spreads wars to whole region such as Syrian Civil War, Iraq War; Libyan Civil War and Yemeni Civil War.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "World Bank Definition: MENA". Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  2. ^ "World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa, Marrakech, Morocco, 26-28 October 2010". World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa 2010 - World Economic Forum. Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "West Asia and North Africa: A Regional Vision". Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  4. ^ "Welcome". Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  5. ^ Dumper, Michael, and Stanley, Bruce E., Cities of the Middle East and North Africa: A Historical Encyclopaedia, 2007
  6. ^ "About MENA". Renaissance Capital Research Portal. 
  7. ^ "MENA Magazine, which covers issues in Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Somalia". Middle East and North Africa magazine. Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  8. ^ "International Reserves". United States Department of Energy. Retrieved 2011.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  9. ^ "World Economic Outlook Database". Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ "MENAT Regional Council". Syracuse University Dubai. Retrieved June 14, 2016. 
  13. ^ "About GE in the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey (MENAT)". General Electric. Retrieved June 14, 2016.