Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Lebanon: Is Real Reform Possible?

If you can't make it to this event, you can watch it by webcast here.

The Middle East Program of the Woodrow Wilson Center
and the Safadi Foundation USA


Lebanon: Is Real Reform Possible?


Minister of Economy and Trade and Member of Parliament, Republic of Lebanon

Domestic reforms are critical to ensuring Lebanon’s long-term independence and sovereignty. Will the Lebanese government be able to strengthen the institutional framework that is required to expand economic opportunity and break down the clientelist structure of the Lebanese state? Minister Safadi will address the current situation on the ground and outline specific steps to move the reform process forward.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
6th Floor Flom Auditorium
Woodrow Wilson Center

Please RSVP to or fax 202-691-4184

Name and Title:



Seating is limited. Seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
A photo ID is required for entry.

The Woodrow Wilson Center is located in the Ronald Reagan Building (Federal Triangle stop on Blue/Orange Line). Public parking is available underneath the Reagan Building; however we recommend metro or taxi.

1 comment:

  1. I could not attend the presentation by Minister Safadi in person because of scheduling conflicts. I was able , however, to do the next best thing and watched the video of the event.

    Had I been able to attend the event in question then I would have raised with Minister Safadi the following three points:

    (1) It will be difficult to disagree with the emphasis that Minister Safadi placed on education as the basis for a free, responsible, competitive and democratic society. One study after another has demonstrated the seminal role attributed to human capital in the field of economic growth and so the Ministers' emphasis on education cannot be faulted. It was not clear though, at least to me, whether his proposal targets educational standards as a whole or whether it was meant to promote quality education at the public level. It might be hard to argue that Lebanon possesses some private educational institutions of a good academic standing but the need is to provide access to the less fortunate by offering them at least as good of an educational experience as the one offered by the private sector.

    (2) Again it will be difficult not to agree with the logic of a more efficient and a better transportation system as outlined by the Minister but with all due respect may I suggest an area that is arguably in more dire need of reform in Lebanon and that is the electricity sector. A modern economy will not be able to grow without an adequate, efficient and reliable energy sector, in this case the production of electricity. May I , furthermore, suggest the need for a clean renewable energy in the form ofwind farms off shore. Wind turbines are efficient, clean and price competitive in addition to being the type of investment that will be self financing.

    (3) May I also point out to the absolute need to take the appropriate measures that Lebanon must make in order to resolve the problem of burgeoning national debt. Unfortunately Lebanon is currently in violation of practically every single important metric regarding the issue of a states ability to carry a sovereign debt burden.

    Thank you for the opportunity to share these few thoughts with you.


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