Economics & Policy articles

Lebanon’s long-awaited 2019 budget

Lebanon’s long-awaited 2019 budget

A sobering reality emerges in the shadow of the long-awaited 2019 budget, declared by Prime Minister Saad Hariri as the most austere in Lebanon’s history. As a stop-gap fiscal rescue package, it falls short of the transformational budget, based on a grand national vision for debt reduction and upgrading of critical infrastructure that is sorely

Internet copyright laws

As the growth of a few digital giants with base in the United States and state intrusion into the online world have reached dimensions that were unimaginable just a decade ago, some critics speak of ‘surveillance capitalism’ as the new form of dictatorship. In the middle of the uncertainty about our digital future, lawmakers are

Lebanon’s new electricity plan

On April 8, the Council of Ministers adopted a new electricity policy paper, aimed at reforming the sector. However, the plan is lacking the key components it aims to address—the financial analysis and the impact on the economy—and also highlights structural issues in the government decision-making process. The electricity sector is a heavy contributor to

Crisis-struck Venezuelans turning to Lebanon

Venezuela teeters on the brink of further deterioration from years of political and economic instability. With self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guiado on one side standing in opposition to current president Nicolas Maduro, the county’s future is uncertain. As with most modern conflicts, what happens in Venezuela has global implications, and this Latin American crisis may

Rethinking social entrepreneurship

January’s Mashreq Conference on Women’s Economic Empowerment was a welcome initiative at a time where socio-economic conditions for women in Lebanon are dire. In addition to a discriminatory legal, political, and social environment, women continue to make up less than 25 percent of the labor force, according to 2018 World Bank estimates. Donor pledges to

Public finances reach Court of Audit

On April 6, 2018, at CEDRE, donor countries pledged $10.2 billion in loans and $860 million in grants to Lebanon to fund long-awaited infrastructure projects in the country. However, the donor countries and organizations require of Lebanon a long list of fiscal, structural, and sectoral reforms in order to release the funds, of which anti-corruption

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