In this issue we invite you to discover the abundant investment opportunities in Akkar and Lebanon's entrepreneurial ecosystem

Dear Readers

While Lebanon witnessed a reconstruction boom in the early 90's, the year 2000 marked a new era for the Lebanese economy with a clear shift towards building a knowledge base economy that would place Lebanon at par with global players. This was boosted through a combination of financial support, infrastructure works, technical and innovation training and fiscal incentives leading to the creation of a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem which is considered one of the friendliest in the region. 
The Investment Development  Authority of Lebanon (IDAL) has been aligned with the government strategy and  have supported the national government in its effort to support start-ups through a series of initiatives including services that are crucial at their inception stage. As such IDAL will be the only government entity to support start-ups from their initial cost by offering them free legal and audit services at their inception stage through its new Business Support Unit.

This also falls in line with our strategy for regional development beyond the main cities with a plan to expand the new support unit to cities and villages outside of Beirut and to work on specialized economic clusters that will bring in job opportunities and investments in rural areas.

More information in this special newsletter edition.

Best wishes,

Nabil Itani
Chairman- General Manager



  • More than 18% of olive oil production in Lebanon takes place in Akkar (mainly in Halba, Bkarzla, Baino, Minyara) making it a prominent location for agro food processing.
  • 57% of the total surface area of Akkar is arable land, out of which 43% are irrigated.
  • Around 38% of cultivated lands are used for the cultivation of cereals, followed by 25% for vegetables, creating opportunities to develop the production of cereals' factories.
  • Akkar has a rich livestock production in particular for cattle accounting for 43% of total holdings of the country, creating opportunities to expand the dairy product industry to meet local demands.

  • More than 17 universities in North Lebanon and one university in Akkar, Halba (Lebanese International University) with around 100,000 students with the majority of whom graduate with a degree in Business & Law or Engineering.
  • North Lebanon including Akkar has the the 2nd highest share of technical schools in Lebanon.
  • New business incubator (BIAT's Akkar Satellite Office) that provides business support services (consulting, accessing to capital and marketing services) in addition to training sessions and office space for entrepreneurs in Akkar.
  • New IT incubator that will house a job training unit as well as back-offices for IT companies in Akkar. The project is part of a 400 meter knowledge center that will be constructed by Netways in collaboration with LARD which focuses on the economic development of Akkar region.

We live in the 21st century: the era of knowledge, technology and innovation. 
Many who have a traditional view of Lebanon, might think that those three words are far from being included in Lebanon's economic prospects. But they are wrong. 
Lebanon has long shifted its focus from an economy based on traditional sectors, to a dynamic economy based on ICT, innovation and lifelong learning. Perhaps the shift has not been swift, but organic, stemming out of Lebanon's high qualit y of Maths and Science Education, the Lebanese entrepreneurial drive, and the Lebanese talent in Silicon Valley, who played a great role in transferring knowledge and know-how for the advancement of the ecosystem.
The numbers are clear; Le banese start-ups are topp ing the list of successful start-ups regionally, highlighting the potential of Lebanon as a Knowledge Hub.

Learn more in this video!


IDAL launched its new Business Support Unit under the patronage of H.E. Prime Minister Saad Hairri.

The Business Support Unit is a new unit located within the premises of the IDAL that provides start-ups with all the needed information to set-up and run their business. It is operated by a dedicated team from IDAL with the support of appointed external legal and accounting advisors. It relies on a close collaboration with specific public sector entities who will assign coordinators to support the new unit.
The BSU at IDAL will provide eligible startups with free Information, Advice, and Licensing support in order to help them establish and grow their company in Lebanon.

The BSU is the 1st of its kind established by a government entity in Lebanon. It will work very closely with all incubators and accelerators in Lebanon to ensure that start-ups across Lebanon can benefit from the BSU services.
It will work closely with universities to foster start-up training and with private sector companies to foster linkages with new and innovative technologies. It will also coordinate with the national government to ensure that the enabling policies are in place to boost the start-up ecosystem.

Who can benefit:

All start-ups with an existing business plan in the ICT, Telecommunications, Technology, Digital Media, Agrotech and other productive sectors will be eligible for IDAL's support through the BSU.

In the news

IDAL launches its Business Support Unit

IDAL's BSU Launch Event at Grand Serail
IDAL's BSU Launch Event at Grand Serail
IDAL announced the launch of the Business Support Unit (BSU) in the presence and patronage of Prime Minister Saad Hariri. IDAL's Chairman Eng. Nabil Itani said that the unit stemmed from the urgent need of the business community and will be the first of its kind within the framework of a government entity in Lebanon, allowing businesses to build on sound legal and scientific grounds, which will enhance the entrepreneurship and attractiveness of the investment climate. He also announced the spread of the BSU soon to all Lebanese regions, so that investors and entrepreneurs could benefit from it wherever they are.

Reaching out to Startups at Arabnet

IDAL was present at this year's Arabnet conference to announce the services of its Business Support Unit (BSU) for startups. IDAL had a booth at the conference with free live legal and auditing advice to all startups wishing to open and operate a business in Lebanon. Our business support services include an array of options from advice on legal structures and audit services, financing options, and commercial information to advice on capital needed, fiscal exemptions and others.

The Potential of Tripoli

IDAL participated at "Tripoli Economic Capital of Lebanon and its Location on the Silk Road" conference organized by the CCIA of Tripoli and the North.
Chairman Nabil Itani declared that Lebanon has recorded several positive indicators during 2017, with an increase of 1.5 % of the GDP. He added that IDAL has processed 75 projects during the past year, up by 60 % comparing to 2016, expecting these projects would create more than 10 thousand jobs when implemented.

Workshop for Specialized Economic Clusters

Upon an invitation by the Cultural Salon in Qobayat, IDAL organized a workshop to promote the concept of productive designation of the region, in preparation for the launch of an initiative aimed at establishing specialized economic clusters (one cluster, one product). IDAL`s Chairman Eng. Nabil Itani, said that this region enjoys many advantages, enabling it to emerge economically, especially in the field of agriculture, food processing and eco- tourism.

Supporting Lebanese Exports

In the framework of the support to the productive Lebanese sectors, the Chairman of IDAL Eng. Nabil Itani inaugurated the Lebanese pavilion at Fruit Logistica exhibition, in the presence of Lebanese Ambassador Mostafa Adib. 
Mr.Itani stated that the Lebanese pavilion at Fruit Logistica falls under the unconditional and full support to the productive sectors, including the agricultural sector. He stressed that the Lebanese agriculture is bursting with many promising opportunities and potential, and show readiness for growth, especially that there are many sectors which still unexploited.

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