Special Report articles

Lebanese banks comply with US Hezbollah Act

Lebanese banks comply with US Hezbollah Act

The introduction to this interview has been updated in response to the June 12 bombing of the Blom Bank headquarter branch in the Verdun district of Beirut. The original introduction began by noting the ire of Hezbollah party leaders in their reaction to the central bank’s early May decision (circular 137) ordering local banks to

Updates on Lebanon’s banking sector

Executive sat with the governor of Banque du Liban (BDL), Lebanon’s central bank, Riad Salameh, for updates on the banking sector, the results of the central bank’s monetary policy, the stimulus of the knowledge economy – known as Circular 331 – and the response to latest foreign initiatives, namely compliance with the United States’ Hezbollah

Compelled to comply

“Should I be worried?” wondered one Beirut Souks restaurant owner. During a lunch at the local establishment the restaurateur passed by the table to inquire about the meal and service, casually mentioning concern over an American law – one targeting Hezbollah’s alleged money laundering through financial institutions worldwide. Local business owners outside the banking industry

No stone unturned

When M Media’s Chairman Eli Khoury described the recent success of Bil Nesbeh La Bokra Chou? (What About Tomorrow?) as “phenomenal”, he was right, from the perspective of the Lebanese market. With gross ticket sales of more than $1.3 million in local theaters, according to online reporting service Box Office Mojo, it is the highest

Yes we Cannes

In mid-May there was a temporary mass migration to the south of France as film professionals around the globe rushed to attend one of the year’s most prestigious international film festivals. When Executive spoke with a number of Lebanese film industry stakeholders last month, the excitement in the air was palpable. But it wasn’t the

Back to banking for the future

Lebanon without banks. That is far more difficult to envision than Mount Sannine without snow or the coast line without illegal buildings and the hills without litter. Asking some Lebanese economists if they can imagine the country without banks is like asking a king salmon if it can live without water. “It is true that

Anatomy of an insurance sector

The Lebanese insurance industry is enigmatic in the sense that numerous companies – 50 – share $1.5 billion in gross premiums but that not one of the companies is listed. For a considerable time – at least in the era of the current insurance law which was updated almost 20 years ago – the country’s

Farming for the future

Entrepreneurship in Lebanon is typically associated with technology – generally app development or a high tech startup – but is rarely associated with farming and agriculture. Yet, within the agriculture sector, there is a rising number of business people who deserve to be labelled as entrepreneurs. They are introducing new and unusual food products to

Growing an organic Lebanon

Rooted in a 2007 project to grow organic fruits and vegetables at the Massoud family farm in Batroun, North Lebanon, for their own consumption and distribution to relatives and friends, Biomass has since become one of Lebanon’s biggest producers and distributors of organic products. Soon after establishing the company, the Massouds found that their farm

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