Economics and DevelopmentLebanon

Getting Lebanon’s Economic Rescue Priorities Right

What should be done to get Lebanon out of this crisis? And more importantly, who should, or can, do it? Many solutions have been circulated, including bailouts, foreign lending programs under the IMF or other institutions, further cuts to public spending, and funding safety nets for the impoverished. But most proposed solutions until today lack

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonUncategorized

Should the Lebanese Government Get More Financial Support for Hosting Refugees?

It is time to resist the political blackmail and recognize the refugees’ basic rights and financial contributions to the host economy (Original published on April 5, 2017 on Al Jazeera) The Lebanese Government intends to request US$10-12 billion from donors at the “Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region” conference hosted this week by

Arab WorldEconomics and DevelopmentMiddle EastPublic PolicySocial JusticeYouth

Launch of the Arab Human Development Report 2016

Launch of the Arab Human Development Report 2016 Youth and the prospects of human development in a changing reality The AHDR 2016 examines challenges and opportunities facing youth in the region, especially since the transformative changes that had swept across many Arab countries in 2011. The report provides an evidenced-based overview on youth in the

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonPublic Policy

One Year On, Lebanon’s Waste Management Policies Still Stink

Original article published by the Lebanese Center for Policy Studies (LCPS) The foul odors of waste profiteering, corruption, and the illegal grab of public funds are back in the public eye. Not that they ever disappeared, really. One year after the onset of Lebanon’s waste crisis, the ruling junta is still trying to push unsustainable

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonPublic PolicyYouth

Spotlight on Youth in Lebanon

A new report which reviews the existing literature on the situation of youth in Lebanon and benefits from opinion polls undertaken for the preparation of the UNDP Regional Arab Human Development Report. The report shows that although Lebanon has made progress towards human development in the past decades, major obstacles remain in creating enough job

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonPublic PolicySocial Justice

On Beirut Madinati, Some Preliminary Thoughts and Reflections

A lot has been said and written about Beirut Madinati, and this is likely to continue for the months and years to come. The thoughts below are however primarily intended for the many volunteers and activists who joined the campaign at various stages, and who contributed to its success. Let me say first that I

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonPublic Policy

Planning Ahead: Reducing the Negative Impacts of a Lebanese Oil and Gas Revenue Boom

‘Ten years from now, twenty years from now, you will see: Oil will bring us ruin … oil is the devil’s excrement. ’ This statement from Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonso, one of the people credited with founding OPEC, illustrates a common phenomenon linked to the discovery of hydrocarbon resources, which has been coined the ‘resource

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonPublic Policy

Macroeconomic implications of windfall oil and gas revenues in Lebanon

The potential for a major discovery of offshore hydrocarbon resources in Lebanon raises concerns about its macroeconomic implications, specifically the Dutch disease phenomenon. This paper first explores whether the Lebanese economy has already been experiencing a Dutch disease episode since the early 1990s due to massive sustained capital inflows fueled by regional petro-dollar income. Using

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonPublic Policy

Open Letter to the President of Beirut’s Municipal Council

Beirut, 27 August 2015 Open Letter to Mr. Bilal Hamad, President of the Municipal Council of Beirut Dear Mr. Hamad, I am writing to you as a Lebanese citizen and taxpayer, and a permanent resident of Beirut. I did not vote to elect you for the Municipal Council, because of our country’s twisted and sectarian

Economics and DevelopmentLebanonSocial Justice

Rewrite Lebanon’s unfair tax laws

Lebanon’s current tax rules are both deeply unjust and ultimately counterproductive. They are unfair primarily because they rely so heavily on indirect taxation — mostly Valued Added Tax and taxes on consumption. On average, when you buy goods in Lebanon, 18 percent of the cost is tax. These indirect taxes make up 70 percent of