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Tick tock

Tick tock

Some view it as a race against Israel Our neighbor—which is definitively not stealing Lebanon’s gas—closes its first offshore licensing round on November 15. Israel had previously awarded exploration licenses directly.Lebanon just postponed the close of its own first round—yet again—from September 15 to October 12. The new deadline, however, actually seems to have been

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

Russian expansionism

There’s no shortage of headlines about Russia’s grand design for the East Mediterranean gas resources. An unrealistic understanding of the strategic significance of these resources and the role they could play in weaning Europe away from Russian gas fuels these claims. In reality, we have yet to see a Russian breakthrough in the upstream oil

Another red flag

On Friday, July 1, two men walked toward a microphone to speak as representatives of their respective political parties, but not in their official capacity as ministers. Following a closed-door meeting, they declared the end to a three-year feud. A bilateral deal had been reached concerning the nation’s potential hydrocarbon resources. Lebanon was set to

Decoding the oil deal

Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri is having trouble making up his mind. Or so it seems. On July 1, Berri and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil struck an unexpected deal. The agreement was touted as a bulldozer clearing the final barrier that, for over three years, has blocked the conclusion of Lebanon’s first offshore oil and gas

A national oil company for Lebanon?

It’s been three years since the nascent oil and gas sector in Lebanon was brought to a complete halt. The relative success of the pre-qualification round in 2013 brought the sector to center stage and contributed to the hype surrounding it. But the pre-qualification round was not followed by a tendering process. Instead, this was

Way beyond cars and football

It means one thing and one thing only when flags of many colors are hoisted on Lebanese balconies: football is imminent. Famed for one of the most consistent and largest shows of fandom for big football nations, the first diehard Lebanese fans of the Nationalmannschaft – a word which the most-watched Arab sport reporters here

Beirut Madinati

Berytus Nutrix Legum, or Beirut as cradle of the law in its Latin expression, has lost all meaning in times such as these, when our national institutions have become decrepit due to the decay of the political culture of the ruling class. As a result, local authorities (municipalities and federations of municipalities) are one of

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

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

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