Principles of Managing Lebanon’s Natural Resources

The Government of Lebanon is unlikely to see any hydrocarbon revenues over the next decade. The most optimistic projections are that oil and gas revenues would start to be collected at least seven to eight years from now and will not exceed two percent of GDP even at peak production. These projections are conditional on a commercial discovery being made this year and there being no delays in field development, both of which are improbable. Additionally, Lebanon’s latest energy plan calls for a large proportion of any commercial gas discovery to be earmarked for domestic energy production. In short, revenue estimates remain highly speculative and could be negligible. Kulluna Irada and The Lebanese Oil and Gas Initiative worked with natural resources expert, Andrew Bauer, to produce a report on the issue as well as on the potential creation of a special fund to allocate hydrocarbon revenues to underfunded expenditure items.