Lebanon has signed bilateral and multiple trade agreements with many Arab and European countries as part its trade liberalization agenda. It is also signatory of 54 bilateral investment agreements for the promotion and protection of investments.
Lebanon has adopted trade liberalization policies as part of its comprehensive economic strategy to integrate Lebanon further into the global economy. It has signed trade agreements with Arab countries and the European Union, the details of which can be found below:
The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership Initiative, 2002: Since 2003, Lebanese industrial and most agricultural products which fall within the limits of tariff quotas enjoy free access to the EU market. As part of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership initiative, an Association Agreement with the EU was signed in 2006, which stipulates the progressive elimination of tariffs on imported goods manufactured by European countries and this by 2014. The Agreement has put in place the necessary conditions for progressive and reciprocal liberalization of trade in goods with a view to establishing a bilateral free trade area including relevant provisions on customs cooperation, competition, protection of intellectual, industrial and commercial property, and services.
The Free Trade Agreement with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), 2004: In June 2004, a free trade agreement between the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and Lebanon was signed which grants Lebanese industrial exports (including fish and other marine products, as well as processed agricultural products) free access to the following EU markets: Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Iceland.
Member of the Greater Arab Free Trade Area (GAFTA), 2005: As a member of the Greater Arab Free Trade Area (GAFTA), Lebanon receives full exemption of tariffs on all agricultural and industrial goods traded between the 17 Arab member countries, since January 2005.
Bilateral Free Trade Agreements with Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Syria, and the UAE.
Lebanon is also an observer in the World Trade Organization (WTO) since 1999.
BILATERAL INVESTMENT TREATIES
54 bilateral Agreements for the Promotion and Protection of Investments provide foreign investors with a legal framework whereby the most favorable setting is established between Lebanon and the 54 contracting partners. The treaties provide a fair and equitable treatment on a non-discriminatory basis, and a full protection and security of foreign investments in both countries.
For more information on the Investment Protection Agreements, please download the PDF.
DOUBLE TAXATION AGREEMENTS
To facilitate trading across borders and foster international business, Lebanon has signed tax conventions with 32 countries. These conventions promote the exchange of goods and services, the inflow of capital, and technology by avoiding double taxation, on one hand, and the prevention of fiscal evasion through administrative assistance between the contracting parties on the other.
For more information on the Double Taxation Treaties signed by the Lebanese government, please download the PDF.