Big words at BDL Accelerate 2015, but what will the result be? | Greg Demarque

Smart money talks

It had to be one of Lebanon’s top resolutions for 2016 when Banque du Liban Governor Riad Salameh pledged at the BDL Accelerate event in December to see to the establishment of an electronic stock exchange for small and medium enterprises. “Our aim for the year 2016 is to succeed in the launching of an

Captagon remains particularly popular in the Gulf countries | Nikolay Doychinov | Reuters

Lebanon’s Captagon boom

The sun had not quite risen one cold January morning in east Lebanon as an army patrol set out to arrest individuals suspected for the murders of Sobhi and Nadimeh Fakhri in November 2014. What was to be a raid in Baalbek turned into a major drug bust – the army stumbled upon a Captagon

Is Lebanon again sailing into a morality-free-zone? | Craig Finley | CC by 2.0

Worse than weapons

The war years in Lebanon were particularly ugly near the end. I was 16 years old when the bottom fell out from under the lira, and the currency collapse changed everything. People lost their jobs. Wealth vanished. Desperation reigned. We were used to being terrorized by bombs, bullets and ever-accurate mortar shells. Financial terrorism proved

Educating borrows is an ethical obligation | Dave Dugdale | CC BY-SA 2.0

The ABCs of the 123s

Finance is a complicated topic to understand. The jargon and math don’t help. Top employees of Lebanese lending institutions have admitted to Executive that even some bankers cannot define an annual percentage rate (APR). Look it up on Wikipedia, and you’ll no doubt be researching more new terms (such as nominal APR and effective APR)

Lenders should educate loan recipients | | Flickr | CC by 2.0

Toward ethical lending

On the list of what separates humans from our primitive ancestors, one activity usually gets neglected: lending with interest. Finance seems embedded in our DNA. We have debt records that date back more than 4,000 years. As the historian Niall Ferguson put it in his book, “The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the

Dane Mark | Getty Images

Shark hunt

Playtime is over. Nearly one year after calling for unregulated lenders to step out of the shadows, Banque du Liban (BDL), Lebanon’s central bank, imposed new restrictions and reporting requirements on what are locally known as comptoir creditors. Until January, articles 183 and 184 of the 1963 Code of Money and Credit – Lebanon’s banking

L'accord de Paris signals the end of the fossil fuel era | Arnaud Bouissou | Flickr | CC0 1.0 Universal

L’accord de Paris

The recent Paris Agreement is a departure in form and substance from previous climate change accords; it calls for a bottom-up approach to limit greenhouse gas emissions. Unlike the 1997 Kyoto Protocol — a bifurcated approach that legally bound developed countries to reduce their emissions — the Paris accord removes the distinction between developed and

Syrian refugees face another harsh winter in Lebanon |Greg Demarque|

Syrian crisis: a new approach

For nearly five years the conflict has dragged on; yet the world is only more daunted by the magnitude of the humanitarian crisis. Here in Lebanon the challenges are numerous – from the strained economy and infrastructure to health care, education, politics and security. All aspects of life have been affected. But we cannot afford

Heads of delegations at COP21 | CC 2.0 via Commons

A 5,000-year opportunity

“This Agreement… aims to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change, in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty, including by: (a) Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5

The shrinking of the Dead Sea has environmental and economic repercussions

One drop at a time

Growing populations, rising demand on resources and mounting environmental pressures are putting an increasing global strain on water resources. In the Middle East in particular, stressed river basins shared by countries are increasingly experiencing problems, and global climate change will only exacerbate this. December’s landmark Paris Agreement on climate change was not primarily about water-related

Illustration by Joseph Kaï

A chance for Lebanon

In December Lebanon, alongside 194 other countries, was represented in Paris for what was expected to be another conference promising to mitigate pollution but delivering little in way of curbing the pace of climate change. After high profile conferences in Kyoto in 1997 and Copenhagen in 2009 failed to obligate countries to reduce pollution, the

Top 20 Entrepreneurs in 2015

Every year Executive highlights 20 of the finest entrepreneurs in Lebanon. For this year, we focused on companies which either had a strong environmental or social impact, and which had a large job creation prospect. Listed in alphabetical order below, the following entrepreneurs and businesses are those that Executive has chosen as the Top 20 enterprises in


Mother and child reunion

This company is part of Executive’s Top 20 for 2015. Read more stories from our entrepreneurship in Lebanon section, for the latest analysis on the country’s ecosystem. MomAdvice Industry: e-Health Product: Health care app Product launch: 2016 Established: 2015 Employees: 3 Founders: Rita Deek and Nicholas Chehade Rita Deek, a trained psychologist, was continuously approached


Educating with intelligence

This company is part of Executive’s Top 20 for 2015. Read more stories from our entrepreneurship in Lebanon section, for the latest analysis on the country’s ecosystem. Taaheel (Lebanese Association for Rehabilitation and Development) Industry: Education Product: Special educational needs assessment kit Product launch: 2008 Established: 2008 Employees: 9 Founder: Hoda Bibi Taaheel was started in

Greg Demarque | Executive

From apps to appreneurship

This company is part of Executive’s Top 20 for 2015. Read more stories from our entrepreneurship in Lebanon section, for the latest analysis on the country’s ecosystem. TEDMOB Industry: Technology and apps Product: Various Product launch: 2015 Established: 2015 Employees: 14 Founder: Mario Hachem TEDMOB – Technology Entertainment Development for Mobile – was formed at