Economics & Policy articles

Inching closer to the edge of our seats

Inching closer to the edge of our seats

Regardless of what local banks keep proclaiming, Lebanon has no oil or gas. There’s reason to believe it does, but the process of finding out is only just beginning. On September 15, companies will bid for rights to explore for oil and/or gas offshore Lebanon. Executive takes a look at what that means, what to

Going shades of green

Lebanon could license the construction of nearly 380 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy plants as early as this summer, a Ministry of Energy and Water (MoEW) official tells Executive. This would mean a rise in generation capacity of just over 20 percent — a far cry from satisfying the country’s demand for power. This clean

Salary adjustment

So much has been said about the salary adjustment. While many people are opposed to it over the perception that it imposes higher taxes, public sector employees and teachers think that an adjustment is long overdue. For one, their salaries have been adjusted only twice — in 2008 and 2012 — since 1997, and these

Myopic taxation

The package of tax measures recently signed into law and published in the Official Gazette was characterized by a lack of any fiscal and economic vision. It does not proceed from a well-designed tax policy addressing the various gaps and imbalances that characterize our fragmented and complicated set of taxes. As we all know, our

Finally, some clarity

After deliberating for much of 2017, Parliament met in late July to ratify new taxes. The legislation then sat on the desk of President of the Republic Michel Aoun for nearly a month, while he contemplated whether or not to sign the taxes into law. In late August, he finally inked his name, briefly ending

Taxation’s redistribution effect

Alain Bifani, director general of Lebanon’s finance ministry, tells Executive that newly enacted taxation will shore up revenue in the public coffer. During an interview at the end of August (before the constitutional court froze the new tax measures) Bifani detailed the tax measures and discussed their impact on segments of the population and on

The oil & gas waiting game

On June 22, Israel’s energy ministry announced that the deadline to place bids in the country’s first offshore licensing round would be pushed back until November 2017. This is the second time the bid round, which opened in November 2016, saw its end date postponed. With the second extension, it became harder to believe the

Moving parts

Beirut Mayor Jamal Itani offers two words when asked about his vision for city spending: “investment projects.” During a brief interview in late July, Itani explained a variety of the city council’s plans, from making Beirut more pedestrian-friendly to balancing private and public interests along the city’s contentious coast. E   What is the city’s

The rumors were true

In late July, the latest round of American legislation targeting Hezbollah arrived, despite Lebanese government and banking officials downplaying rumors of it just a few months ago, as Executive reported. The Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act would supplement a 2015 law curbing the group’s access to banking systems, and is the latest legislative effort

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