6 Develop a global partnership for development

Where we are?

The eighth MDG assesses the macro setting in which all other goals are achieved. It differs from
the other seven specific goals in that it puts a global responsibility towards developing countries, in
addition to the national responsibility. While global responsibility towards a partnership for development remains essential to facilitate developing countries’ catching-up, this chapter will focus on the Lebanese national efforts in creating a macro setting conducive to development through linkages with the rest of the world. Having set the stage with a brief overview of Lebanon’s macroeconomic situation in the introductory chapter, this chapter will discuss the elements of MDG 8 most relevant to Lebanon. These are trade and financial cooperation for development (Target 8.A), debt sustainability (Target 8.D) and private sector cooperation for development through the pharmaceutical and telecommunication sectors
(Targets 8.E and 8.F).

 Situation Analysis: Achievements And Challenges
Lebanon’s geographical location at an intersection point between East and West, its history of economic liberalism including free movement of capital and goods, its full currency convertibility and well-developed banking sector, have all facilitated its integration within the global economy. Lebanon is pursuing trade liberalization reforms and reducing its tariff rates (table 10.1). The country already has a number of free trade agreements with large trading blocks such as the European Union, the European Free Trade Association and the Gulf Cooperation Council. Lebanon also became part of the Greater Arab Free Trade Area in January 2005, and is negotiating accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). To date, seven working party meetings have taken place with the WTO to review the country’s responses to issues that were raised by member States. Other bilateral and multilateral negotiations with trading blocs have been completed. Ongoing agreements such as the initiation of negotiations with Mercosur, the economic and political agreement between Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela are underway. These agreements have pushed Lebanon to introduce business reforms and to modernize the business and legal framework. However, their economic and social impact, particularly on decent job creation and poverty reduction, requires further in-depth investigation and might vary from sector to sector.Debt sustainability Situation Analysis: Achievements And Challenges
Debt sustainability has been a major obstacle to development in Lebanon. The country has a swelling debt and high debt servicing ratios, which are constraining fiscal space and limiting the manoeuvring of fiscal expenditure. Lebanon has attempted a number of public finance reform measures and debt alleviation measures, supported by aid. Despite some successes, the country has not yet embarked on a soft landing scenario.

Selected Good Practices
Lebanon’s ability to secure financing, whether from the private sector through trade, or financial flows, or donor’s aid, has been noteworthy. International institutions have questioned the ability of the country after every crisis to weather shocks. Three donor conferences have provided Lebanon with concessional financing without the need to resort to the international financial institutions’ conditional programmes. It also pushed governments to start formulating long-term plans and for the first time incorporate a social plan, which was developed later into a strategy. Had this strategy been pursued more comprehensively to fulfil its vision, it would have advanced the country on its development trajectory. Among more specific selected good practices related to MDG 8 is the Lebanese Ministry of Finance’s endorsement of the International Aid Transparency Initiative. Lebanon was the 20th developing country to endorse such a voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative that includes donors, partner countries and CSOs. The International Aid Transparency Initiative aims to make information about aid spending easier to access, use and understand.

UNDP's work in Lebanon


    Transactions from the comfort of home
    Transactions from the comfort of home

    “ People used to wait for hours and maybe days to get their transactions done at the port of Beirut, the airport and the border offices, however with the UNDP project at the customs, the stakeholders now have the luxury of completing their transactions from their living room” explained Mr. Wassim Khawand, Customs Component Manager of the “Technical Assistance for Fiscal Management and Reform” UNDP project at the Ministry of Finance.more

  • UNDP Lebanon - Art Graffiti created by youth in south Lebanon

    Venice and Lebanon: together through the mirror
    Venice and Lebanon: together through the mirror

    The project “Venice and Lebanon: together through the mirror” is a joint project involving UNDP Art Gold and Venice municipality. It offered to a group of about 100 Lebanese youngsters from different villages and confessional backgrounds in the South the opportunity to participate at three artistic workshopsmore

Targets for MDG8
  1. Develop further an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system
    • Developing countries gain greater access to the markets of developed countries
    • Least developed countries benefit most from tariff reductions, especially on their agricultural products
  2. Address the special needs of least developed countries
    • Net Official development assistance (ODA), total and to the least developed countries, as percentage of OECD/DAC donors' gross national income
    • Proportion of total bilateral, sector-allocable ODA of OECD/DAC donors to basic social services (basic education, primary health care, nutrition, safe water and sanitation)
    • Proportion of bilateral official development assistance of OECD/DAC donors that is untied
    • Market access
    • Debt sustainability
  3. Address the special needs of landlocked developing countries and small island developing States
    • Official development assistance (ODA) received in landlocked developing countries as a proportion of their gross national income
    • ODA received in small island developing States as a proportion of their gross national incomes
    • Proportion of bilateral official development assistance of OECD/DAC donors that is untied
    • Market access
    • Debt sustainability
  4. Deal comprehensively with the debt problems of developing countries
    • Total number of countries that have reached their HIPC decision points and number that have reached their HIPC completion points (cumulative)
    • Debt relief committed under HIPC and MDRI Initiatives
    • Debt service as a percentage of exports of goods and services
  5. In cooperation with pharmaceutical companies, provide access to affordable essential drugs in developing countries
    • Proportion of population with access to affordable essential drugs on a sustainable basis
  6. In cooperation with the private sector, make available the benefits of new technologies, especially information and communications
    • Telephone lines per 100 population
    • Cellular subscribers per 100 population
    • Internet users per 100 population