Area Size: 788 Km2 Population: 330,000 (as per latest estimates) Administrative Center: Halba Number of municipalities: 125 Number of Projects that benefited from IDAL’s incentives: 1 Employment Rate: 8.2%
LOCATION AND TOPOGRAPHY:
The Governorate of Akkar is located in the far North of Lebanon, with the Mediterranean Sea on its western border, Hermel to the East, Syria to the North and the Bared River and the district of Minieh-Dinnieh to the South. Halba, the capital city of Akkar, lies 30km northeast of Tripoli and 112km of Beirut.
The landscape of Akkar is extremely diverse. There are 3 principal physiographic zones: the plain, the mid-elevation plateau, and the mountains. Akkar is home to the Qammou’a forest, a unique environmental treasure, and to vast areas of oak and pine forests. The plain is endowed with rich fertile soils and generous water resources. On the coast, small scale fishing and vegetable production are a major source of income.
MAIN ECONOMIC ACTIVITY:
Agriculture: Theagricultural plain of Al-Bokayaa in Wadi Khaled region makes the region suitable for the cultivation of following crops: cereals, vegetables, tobacco, and olive. Livestock is also practiced throughout the region, involving sheep, goats, and poultry, while fishing is practiced in the coastal region.
Industry: Akkar’s strongest industrial sector is the agro-food sector (Food & Beverages) with a total of 8 firms. However the total number of industrial firms is 29 which is meager relatively to the size and potential of this district.
Other economic activities in Akkar include wholesale and retail trading, services, construction, materials and mining, vehicle sales & maintenance, and handicrafts.
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.
New Storage facility (Akkar Agricultural Center) which accommodates cold storage and packaging facilities, as well as provides technical training in good agricultural practices.
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.
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.
Akkar has a rich livestock production in particular for cattle accounting for 43% of total holdings of the country.
Agriculture: Potential clustering options exist in the production of seeds, pesticides and fertilizers. Also, investment opportunities in aquaculture farming systems exist in Akkar such as private shrimp farm producing Penaeus vannamei in Abdeh.
Agro-Food: Investment opportunities in potatoes processing are available in Akkar. Moreover, opportunities exist in the production of extra virgin olive oil from new varieties of olive such as Barnea (Senolia), Frantoio and other olive varieties obtained through new breeding techniques. Also, Flavored olive oils with different herbs and spices are becoming popular and represents a good investment opportunity in the Lebanese market.