The prospects for economic development in the Arab world of the Middle East and North Africa took on a new dimension in the Fall of 1973. The unprecedented increase in oil revenues generated by a steep rise in prices then and in January 1974 created the potential for rapid sodal and economic change. The boom in the oil-dominated economies of the Gulf states and Libya led to an increased demand for labor. Because of their small demographic base and the low participation rates of their nationals in economic activities, the oil-rich states increased their import of foreign labor. Thus, during the 1970s the scale of international labor migration in the Middle East increased markedly.