Special Report articles

To Dubai for diagnosis

To Dubai for diagnosis

When Maria Carballo recently returned to her job with an airline in the United Arab Emirates, she felt fortunate. Her tests after completing treatment for breast cancer had shown that she was free of the disease. She also felt that she had made the right decision to choose not Dubai for her therapy but a

A healthy market

With an entrenched sedentary lifestyle, junk food as part of the daily diet, a climate that discourages outdoor walking, an aging population and a good few genetic predispositions, the outlook for healthcare costs in the Gulf is both devastating and titillating. Consulting firm Frost & Sullivan (F&S) calculated the rise in per capita expenditure on

Q&A – Issam Hitti

Insurance broking is a business of consulting and risk advisory that historically bears the onus of being the “middle man”, with all the common questions of what value this function brings with it. Executive sat down with Issam Hitti, the president of the Lebanese Insurance Brokers Syndicate (LIBS) to find out how the brokers are

Orange scheme crashes

It ain’t broken, but the economy underlying one of the Lebanese motor insurance industry’s specialities has vanished. While the Orange Card system for cross-border liability insurance protection of Arab motorists is functionally fine, commercially speaking, Lebanese administrators tell Executive that business has fallen precipitously – premiums have roughly halved and sales are almost non-existent. Data

Weathering the rainy days

It has been said with some justification that the global economy could be saved from recession if enough people collectively started believing that the end of the world was upon us. Pre-apocalyptic consumer spending would skyrocket and blow the lid off all current growth restraints. But it is questionable if people would think to spend

Tied up in risk

Lebanese entrepreneurs traditionally have approached risks with the attitude that they prefer to carry them themselves rather than pay for risk transfer, unless there is a compelling reason to buy insurance. Companies insure their vehicle fleets and some contract medical coverage for staff as add-on benefits beyond the obligatory payments to the social security system.

Blank the ballot

Parliamentary elections in June 2013 will define both the ruling majority for the next four years and the identity of the future Lebanese president, and the Lebanese electoral law will play a crucial role in this process. But the country’s opposing political camps — the March 8 and March 14 coalitions — are not willing

Linking electoral and economic reform

The approval of the new electoral law based on proportional representation by the Council of Ministers, Lebanon’s cabinet, has the potential to be a historical moment but will most likely be cursed to an early grave. When it comes to a show of hands in Parliament, the Future Movement, the Progressive Socialist Party and the

The vice of vested interest

If there is one thing that has become clear since the debate over electoral reform resurfaced in Lebanon, as it does every four years, it is that the main political forces in the country consider elections to be a form of leverage over the people rather than an opportunity to ensure fair and democratic representation.

No rockin’ around the clock

White Beirut’s website features a video which begins with news reporters announcing the various negative political events of this summer and Gulf country travel warnings for Lebanon. It then rolls on to the song “War, What is it Good For?” and shows photos of people clubbing at White and ends with the statement “This is