Presidency of the
Council of Ministers
We have invited companies engaged in Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) activities along with representatives from the Ministry of Telecommunications, and the Presidency of the Council of Ministers for a round-table discussion aimed at looking into ways to support the industry in Lebanon, including the outsourcing of shared services, call center activities and IT services. The meeting covered IDAL's participation at the International Outsourcing Forum (IOF) which is taking place this year in Reims, France on October the 2nd and defined a roadmap for promoting the business process outsourcing industry in Lebanon.
Lebanese Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh said the country will introduce measures to encourage startup companies in a bid to spur economic growth amid political instability.
Under the changes, to be announced this month, banks will be allowed to invest as much as 3% of their own funds in startup companies. The central bank will provide banks with interest-free credit lines for the projects. This will not be a debt investment but a capital investment with a system in place that will cover the risks of start-ups investments to up to 75%.
The stimulus package will be the second the central bank has introduced this year. The central bank in January provided USD 1.35 billion to banks at 1% interest rate to boost lending for new businesses, especially small and medium enterprises, housing and the renewable energy industry.
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In this issue you will find information on the latest released FDI figures for 2012 by both the UNCTAD and the AIEGC along with our latest investor traffic report. Featured in this newsletter is also our latest publications’ release, including the 2012 Annual Report.
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IDAL partnered with Astrolab and Bader Young Entrepreneurs Program for the “Scaling Online Startups” (SOS) workshop from 5 till 7 July.
The workshop brought together more than 10 companies involved in e-commerce activities. The aim of the partnership is to highlight opportunities in the ICT sector and encourage investments in the sector. E-commerce in Lebanon is presenting significant opportunities for regional businesses and investors as it remains an untapped market with currently around 10% of the Lebanese internet users only shopping online. In 2013, the online market in Lebanon is expected to witness significant growth with the increasing consumers’ trust in online payment systems. Various online payment gateways and initiatives by the Lebanese banking sector such as PayPal and Emall by Bank Audi are expected to boost online sales in the coming months and stimulate the e-commerce market in Lebanon.