Economics & Policy articles

Efforts to legally monetize Lebanon’s cannabis

Efforts to legally monetize Lebanon’s cannabis

If you ask the farmers of the Bekaa Valley, they will explain that cannabis cultivation in Lebanon predates the establishment of Lebanon’s republic by generations. Located some 30 kilometers east of the capital Beirut and nestled between the western Mount Lebanon range and the Anti-Lebanon Mountains to the east, the Bekaa Valley has for a

Lebanon’s bid toward low-carbon mobility

With a global move underway to green the transport sector—in particular, to reduce the impact of privately-owned vehicles—analysts predict that the end of the age of the internal combustion engine is just down the road. The primary catalyst for this move toward greener options can be attributed to the Paris Agreement—a treaty struck among the

Promoting peace in the Mideast

Executive sat with Matahiro Yamaguchi, Japan’s ambassador to Lebanon, to discuss the country’s humanitarian aid to Lebanon, April’s CEDRE infrastructure investment conference, and prospects for peaceful resolutions to the region’s conflagrations. E   The Japanese Embassy is now funding a United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)-designed project targeting job creation, productivity gains, and market access

New infrastructure for education and research

To say that infrastructure is a hot topic in Lebanon is quite the understatement. As infrastructure deficiencies loom large and many new initiatives to implement necessary projects are, realistically, still months or even years away, it is good news that an oft-overlooked need for an academic research and communication network is moving gradually toward fulfillment—with

A Middle East oasis of peace

The economy of peace in the Middle East is dwarfed by the economies of war. But at times like today, when the region is being suffocated once again by the overbearing weight of global power interests, even small stories that combine authentic experiences of real coexistence with critiques of its deficiencies can remind us of

Running a once famed industry

Lebanon’s furniture making tradition dates back thousands of years—thanks, in large part, to the cedar tree, the country’s national symbol. Historical records and religious texts often reference the high quality of Lebanese cedar wood, and its renown across the region as an important building resource and a material for luxury furniture. More recently, furniture making

Let’s have a serious talk about drugs

The cannabis debate never completely goes away in Lebanon. This is not surprising, given that the country is a major producer and consumer of the psychoactive plant. Everyone who is anyone has an opinion on the drug, usually expressed through impactless sound bites. The discussion was reignited on June 18 by an Internal Security Forces

Refugee rights not up for debate

In the past month, Lebanon has seen a number of troubling developments regarding the presence of Syrian refugees, with leading politicians heightening calls for the return of refugees to Syria and making unfounded accusations of an international conspiracy to settle them in Lebanon. As countries around the world have turned their backs on refugees, Lebanon

Inside the global economy

In publishing a “practical guide” to the global economy, American economic researcher Andrew Vonnegut provides a toolset for better understanding the ways in which it is prone to be influenced by “big shifts.” According to Vonnegut, such shifts can be demographic or ecological, but can also involve issues related to inequality, information technology, and emerging

No growth without reform

Within a period of six weeks last spring, Lebanon received an attentive treatment from the international community. On March 15 in Rome, an international meeting was held to support Lebanon’s armed and security forces. Afterwards in Paris on April 6, world leaders convened to offer Lebanon substantial foreign aid to bolster its economy at the

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