14 Reasons to do business in Lebanon.
Why should Danish companies invest/do business in Lebanon? There are many advantages of investing in Lebanon and to make it short we will summarize it as follows:
- Strategic Location: A strategic geographical location as a transshipment point between a variety of Arab countries and overseas.
- Free Market Economy: Lebanon offers the most liberal investment climate in the Middle East and is ranked as one of the freest economy regionally and internationally, with the Government maintaining a non‐interventionist stance toward private investments.
- Liberal Financial Environment: Lebanon is known for its liberal financial environment with a free exchange regime.
- Investment Incentives: The government of Lebanon offers a series of incentives to national and foreign investors alike as part of its strategy to attract investments to growth promising sectors. A series of exemptions and tax breaks are offered by various ministries and government agencies to support companies in their set-up and operation phases. More information on the incentives provided across productive economic sectors can be found on IDAL Website
- Banking Secrecy: Lebanon had a long tradition of banking confidentiality and privacy officially codified in the Banking Secrecy Law. In 2002, the traditional banking secrecy law in Lebanon has, been amended to empower the Special Investigation Committee (SIC) to lift bank secrecy and investigate suspicious transactions to ensure compliance with anti-money laundering law
- Non-Discriminatory and Efficient Legal Framework: Lebanon provides Protection of private property and right and equality between the Lebanese and Non Lebanese.
- Human resources: Lebanon is known for its young, high skilled, educated and multilingual (Arabic, English and French) workforce. Labor costs are low with a skilled resourceful workforce.
- Rebuilding Syria: Lebanon is going to be the hub for re-building Syria, goods movement to the region and is now seen as one of the most secured countries in the region in all means.
- Oil and Gas: The future is promising due to many factors such as; the Oil and gas reservoirs found off shore which will affect the economy with a significant boost.
- Quality Health Care: Both public and private medical facilities, clinics and pharmacies are available throughout Lebanon, and they are generally well quipped, especially in urban areas, with qualified and professional doctors and English/French speaking staff. Private hospitals are usually very good with the latest facilities and technology
- Rich History and Culture: Throughout history, Lebanon has been a contact center between various cultures and civilizations, rendering it a highly cosmopolitan country
- High Quality of Life: Lebanon offers a wide variety of tourism attractions and activities all year round in natural scenery from beautiful beaches to mountains and valleys. With its ambiance of hospitality and warmth, Lebanon served as the business, cultural, academic and touristic center of the MENA
- Lebanon as a hub: The Lebanese Diaspora worldwide are entrepreneurs and business people that proved very successful, in all kinds of sectors and contexts. They are considered "rich, educated and influential. Throughout their history, the Lebanese diaspora used their Lebanese identity to create strong networks to help each other out and many used them to develop a productive and profitable activity though, there remains a great untapped potential for further collaboration and cooperation between the diaspora and the Lebanese in their home-country.
- Transparency: Corruption is a factor to be aware of. In Recent years Lebanon has however witnessed the emergence of several new anti-corruption initiatives, raising awareness about the magnitude of the issue in the country. The new Lebanese government has made combating corruption one of their priorities, and has appointed for the first time an anti-Corruption Minister. The Lebanese government State Minister for Combating Corruption Nicolas Tueni stresses that an “uprising” against corruption in Lebanon is needed, and hailed the intentions of President Michel Aoun and Prime Minister Saad Hariri to fight it.
Eventually looking at the Syrian crises with business eyes you’ll find some promising opportunities in challenging but emerging sectors. It is worth noting that Lebanon is positioning itself as the coming hub for the re-construction phase in Syria once the war is over, however the world bank´s recent estimation for the re-construction of Syria is estimated at app. 200 billion us dollars. If Danish Companies wish to do businesses in Syria having a presence in Lebanon and Jordan will be an advantage. However, there is a UN as well as an EU embargo of Syria that companies have to be aware of. Do contact the Embassy or the EU-embassy for more information.
We hope that this short introduction gave you a better understanding of the Lebanese business market.
If you have further questions please contact our Trade Council in Beirut, they will assist your company with export, investment and partnership activities in Lebanon, Jordan as well as the Middle Eastern region.
Source: Beirut Traders Association
Source: Now Health International (Europe) Limited
Source: IDAL: Invest in Lebanon