Lebanon launches new UN-supported plan to reboot economy

Lebanon’s Ministry of Economy and Trade has launched a UN-supported plan to reboot the country’s ailing economy.

The plan, with support from the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), identified short-term actions in three key sectors, namely agribusiness, tourism, and the digital economy, to “initiate recovery by rapidly generating employment opportunities and additional income,” said the ESCWA in a statement on Monday.

“Amid this challenging situation, we are looking to light a candle of hope. The plan presented today is subject to development, improvement and feedback. Still, most importantly, it is feasible,” Lebanese Minister of Economy and Trade Amin Salam said at the project’s launching ceremony.

ESCWA Executive Secretary Rola Dashti said that ESCWA would support the Ministry in conducting analysis, developing key performance indicators (KPIs), engaging with stakeholders, and communicating strategically about the plan, Xinhua news agency reported.

“Although fundamental reforms are crucial, the Lebanese people do not have the luxury to wait for longer-term results; they need quick wins,” she added.

According to ESCWA, the country’s GDP shrunk by 25 per cent in 2020 and 16.2 per cent in 2021. However, it projects positive growth for Lebanon in 2022.