Republic of Lebanon

Our Policy Areas

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1- Liberalization of the Telecom Sector:

The Government recognizes that the evolution of the digital economy, at a global level, is proceeding at such a rapid pace that unless various fundamental matters are urgently addressed within Lebanon, the ICT development gap that presently exists between Lebanon and its peer states will escalate.  This could mean that what may presently represent disadvantages will evolve to become embedded structural barriers to economic and social progress.


In light of the above, the government will undertake the following:

  • Speed up the belated structural reforms to the sector, as time is of essence!
  • Rely on the private sector, national and international, for the investment needed, and not on government budget.
  • Review the level of taxation on telecommunications service-supply.
  • Allow the supply of state of the art infrastructure and innovative services to consumers through competition at all levels of the network.
  • Create the telecommunications market (through the application of Law 431) subject to the effective regulation and governance of the TRA; such regulation and governance should at all times ensure that competition is fair and innovation is not hampered. 


Within such a framework, Law 431 needs immediate enforcement to insure proper transition from a government run sector to a fully competitive one. In particular the two mobile operators have to be privatized with a substantial part of shares to be floated on the Beirut Stock Exchange for acquisition by Lebanese investors. It is worth noting that Lebanon is the only country in the world that still owns its mobile operations.


The government will move the debate forward and build the consensus still lacking about these fundamental issues to allow the private sector into the telecommunications market or to keep all networks within the ownership and operations of the government. Government policy shall move away from the piece-meal approach to fixing the problem that has been followed hitherto. The economic team at the PCM has drafted a high level Statement of Government Policy (2011), and a National ICT Strategy (2005) encompassing the whole ICT sector; the government will now build consensus for the implementation of both policy and strategy with the stakeholders.


The government would soon decide on several imminent telecommunication related issues and deadlines, namely:


  • End of ISPs & DSPs yearly licenses (December 2011)
  • End of Mobile Management Contracts (January 2012)
  • End of TRA Board 3 year term (February 2011)
  • TRA operating without mandate
  • OGERO operating without contract since Aug 2011
  • Council of Ministers to nominate board of Liban Telecom

2- e-Transactions Draft Law:

The President of the Council of Ministers undertook during the parliamentary legislative session of 5 August 2011 to rewrite the law on e-transactions which received opposition from the General Assembly.  That same law had received the same opposition a year earlier during the General Assembly as well.  The President of the Council of Ministers assigned a committee made of representatives of both the public and the private sector.  The public sector was represented by the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Telecommunications, Ministry of Economy and Trade, and Office of the Minister of State for Administrative Reform.  The private sector was represented by the Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture of Beirut & Mount Lebanon, the Professional Computer Association PCA, the Association of Lebanese Software Industry ALSI, and the independent legal expert Dr. Toni Issa.  The Central Bank and the Ministry of Information were also represented during the last meeting of the committee. 


The committee prepared the “e-transactions and protection of personal data” draft attached, due to be presented to the Council of Ministers in April 2012.


The Draft Law is posted on this website for Open Consultation.  All comments should be sent to by e-mail.

3- Statement of ICT Policy:

This Statement of Policy sets the national framework and provides the guidance for the development of the ICT sector for the next three years.   Every line ministry would then develop its detailed sectoral policy to be in implemented in line with this Statement of Policy.  The major themes of the policy are as follows:

Fiscal constraints and government role:  There has been underinvestment in government-owned ICT undertakings and infrastructure in recent years.  The government requires that this situation be urgently corrected and to the extent possible  future investment  be provided by the private sector.   The government will only provide funding to state-owned undertakings: (a) in periods of transition to private sector ownership; (b) where in particular circumstances it is established beyond doubt that the private sector funding will not be forthcoming; and (c) to meet exceptional needs associated with social development programs.  Consistent with this Policy, the government will conduct on a regular basis a formal review of the level, ways and means by which tax and other revenues are derived from the ICT sector.  The review will ensure that revenues essential to the operation of the State, be fairly-based and  their negative impact upon the development of the sector be minimized.

Telecommunications:  Government policy objective is to supply  citizens and business with a wide choice (full range) of telecommunication services t at least at par with those supplied in the region and which enhance the attractiveness of Lebanon (as a business center as well as a place to live…).  The provision of fast-broadband capacity and services is a  priority.   Government believes  this aim will  be best achieved by opening all ICT markets to entry by additional suppliers, subject to normal licensing requirements, security considerations and other safeguards.  The government will continue to assist the development of the ICT sector by ensuring access where practical to Government assets, such as ducts, dark fiber, rights of way and similar facilities, .

 Underlying legal, institutional and educational structures for ICT development :  Government policy objective is to put into place as soon as possible all laws and organizational arrangements necessary to facilitate the development of the ICT sector, through coordinated action by relevant ministries and agencies.  The government will support initiatives to encourage the use of ICT by consumers and small businesses and will see to it that ICT relevant elements are  part of the educational system.  The development and enhancement of eGovernment programs will be given p due priority.

A suitable investment environment:  Consistent with the objectives of enhancing investment and economic activity, which are manifested in all themes of Policy, Government requires that steps are identified and taken, which may extend to the provision of incentives, to encourage private sector investment in ICT businesses and in research and development.  In particular, the government considers it essential to encourage early stage support for small businesses, enforcement of Intellectual Property, fostering creativity and creative industries, investing in developing digital content.

Governance of the ICT Sector:  Government policy objective is that the development of the ICT sector be properly coordinated and regulated.  The Ministry of Telecommunications will cease all activities associated with the direct supply of telecommunications services and assume full responsibility for policy making and promotion of the entire ICT sector, including digital broadcasting.  Consistent with this expanded mandate, the Ministry shall be renamed Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MoICT).

The draft law is posted on this website for Open Consultation.  All comments should be sent to  by e-mail.

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