As part of its strategy to support regional development through investments in productive sectors and with the belief that each region in Lebanon has competitive advantages that should be highlighted, IDAL launched a campaign to showcase the economical strengths of each governorate in Lebanon and to incentivize the local community to produce and prosper within their region.
Each governorate boasts an abundance of investment opportunities based on its socio-economic environment and the natural resources it holds. You can find regional core strengths in agriculture, tourism, agro food, and soft industries. Those prominent regional economies offer a diverse investment environment for your business portfolio.
In this issue we invite you to discover the abundant investment opportunities in the North of Lebanon, from industry to tourism, with a special emphasis on the Furniture and Wood Sector and Olive Oil production which the North is specialized in.
Chairman- General Manager
INVEST IN NORTH LEBANON
The North Lebanon Governorate spans along the Mediterranean coast, limited by the Akkar Governorate to its North, the Baalback-Hermel Governorate to its East, and the Mount Lebanon Governorate to its South. It is composed of urbanized, mixed rural areas mainly concentrated around the city of Tripoli, Lebanon's second largest city after Beirut, as well as natural areas in the rest of the territory.
Access to Human Capital
- Presence of 18 universities with more than 100,000 registered students.
- The North is home to 28% of the country's technical public schools and 37% of its private technical schools
- 11% of labor force operates in agriculture sector and 11% in industrial sector
Access to Natural Resources
- 3 rivers and fertile land on the coast
- Home to 41% of Lebanon's olive groves
Access to Finance
- North Lebanon accounts for 29% of commercial banks in Lebanon
Access to Markets
- Port of Tripoli: The port is the 2nd port in Lebanon after the Port of Beirut with an approximate area of 3 Million m2 and receives about 450 ships every year, averaging 37 ships per month.
- Tripoli Special Economic Zone: The Tripoli Special Economic Zone spans over 55 hectares and provides companies with fiscal, financial, as well as non-financial incentives. They are currently working on the licensing regime and the one stop shop.
- Qleyaat Airport: Named the Airport of Rene Mouawad with a capacity of 1 million passengers and 200 000 tons of freight per year. The government has plans of restoring this airport for low-cost airlines.
The Tripoli International Fair (TIF): Spanning over an area of 1,000,000 meters square is considered 5th among the largest exhibition centers in the world in terms of dimensions and variety of constructions.
- Chamber of Commerce, Agriculture, and Industry in Tripoli: One of the oldest chambers of commerce in the Arab world, it is a trusted establishment that has managed to consolidate business traditions with the development of economic life.
- Incubation Support: Presence of the Business Incubation Association of Tripoli which has provided mentorship opportunities to more than 2500 entities and has hosted more than 145 start-ups in its space, in addition to the the Beirut Arab University - Center for Entrepreneurship.
FURNITURE AND WOOD SECTOR IN LEBANON
In the MENA region, the furniture market is expected to grow at a fast rate due to the region's flourishing construction sector. Total demand of furniture retail in the MENA stood at USD 13.2 billion in 2014, and is expected to remain positive over the next five years. In the MENA, the sawn softwood market is expected to grow by an average of 3% annually in 2016 and afterward.
Lebanon has a competitive edge in the manufacturing of high end furniture and wood products. These products are usually handcrafted and customized to fit consumer's taste. Because such an activity faces relatively small competition from the Far East and regional countries, its prospects for success in Lebanon are high.
The furniture and wood sector accounted for 4% of total industrial output in 2007, and
6% of total industrial value added the same year. In 2016, furniture companies accounted for 13% of the total number of industrial firms in Lebanon, comprising 544 companies, the second largest number of companies after the food and beverage sector. Wood companies accounted for only 4% of industrial firms for the same year, comprising 151 companies.
OLIVE OIL SECTOR IN LEBANON
Olive oil is amongst the most prominent Lebanese signature agro-industrial products, and a proud part of the
country's history and culinary tradition. Lebanon's diverse topography, fertile soil, microclimates, and olive
varieties allow farmers to produce uniquely flavored products. Around 41% of olive oil production takes place in the North of which 18% in Akkar, followed by Nabatiyeh where 21% of the production is located,
15% in the South, 13% in the Bekaa with more than 9% in the caza of Sour, and 10% in the Mount Lebanon.
Exports of olive oil have been on an upward trend over the last four of years, growing at a CAGR of 14%, and reaching 4,162 tons in 2012, more than a third of domestic production. Equally noticeable was the predominance of extra virgin olive oil amongst total exports.
Demand far exceeds supply in the country, and Lebanese consumers are sometimes forced to rely on imported products. This leaves room for various investment opportunities.
LEBANON'S LATEST RANKINGS
Below are Lebanon's latest worldwide and regional rankings:
- Ranked 1st in MENA for for rate of Nascent Entrepreneurs
- Ranked 8th Globally for Total Stage Entrepreneurial Activity
- Lebanon scored 5.9/7 on Restriction of Capital Flows
- Ranked 23rd Globally on Soundness of Banks Indicator
- Ranked 27th worldwide in terms of price competitiveness in Tourism
- Ranked 33rd in the prioritization of Travel and Tourism
- The American University of Beirut Ranked 1st Best University in MENA
* Global Entrepreneurship Monitor
* Global Competitiveness Report
* Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, 2017
* QS Arab Region Univeristy Rankings
In the news
IDAL at GITEX
With the support of IDAL, Lebanon participated at GITEX 2017, which was inaugura
ed in Dubai between 8 to 12 October 2017. IDAL supported 22 Lebanese start-ups and SMEs with the aim of forging partnerships and meeting potential investors.
The Lebanese participation in this exhibition was a significant success, with a numbe
r of Lebanese companies receiving financial awards and ratings, including Modeo and Cherpa, which won a cash prize of $ 15,000 each. The first was awarded the best idea prize, while the second won t
he best youth employment startup prize.
As for the global competition organized by "Wamda", Fig startup won the fintech track, and Lightsense won the telecommunication track.
IDAL Inaugurates the Lebanese Pavilion in ANUGA
IDAL sponsored the participation of Lebanese Agrofood Industrialists at ANUGA in Germany, one of the biggest Agro-Food Trade Shows. This participation aims at increasing Lebanese products exports to European markets, in addition to the establishment of an exchange platform between exporters and commercial centers in Europe.
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IDAL welcomed a delegation from Sweden to Lebanon who are looking for collaborative opportunities between both countries in the areas of entrepreneurship, tourism and innovation. The three days-visit covered meetings with officials, hotel chains, and key players in the start-up ecosystem. The delegation included
Mr. Thomas Andersson CEO of Invest in Stockholm, Mr. Wadih El Achkar CEO of Startup Stockholm, Mr. Oscar Lavleid Advisor to the Mayor of Stockholm, and Mr. Per Dans Head of SIDA Development Agency.