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Lebanon Facts

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 LEBANESE POLITICAL
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Background: Following the capture of Syria from the Ottoman Empire by Anglo-French forces in 1918, France received a mandate over this territory and separated out a region of Lebanon in 1920. France granted this area independence in 1943. A 15-year civil war (1976-1991) devastated the country, but Lebanon has since made progress toward rebuilding its political institutions. Under the Ta'if Accord - the blueprint for national reconciliation - the Lebanese established a more equitable political system, particularly by giving Muslims a greater voice in the political process while institutionalizing sectarian divisions in the government. Since the end of the war, Lebanon has conducted several successful elections, most militias have been disbanded, and the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) have extended authority over about two-thirds of the country. Hizballah, a radical Shi'a organization listed by the US State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organization, retains its weapons. During Lebanon's civil war, the Arab League legitimized in the Ta'if Accord Syria's troop deployment, numbering about 16,000 based mainly east of Beirut and in the Bekaa Valley. Damascus justified its continued military presence in Lebanon by citing Beirut's requests and the failure of the Lebanese Government to implement all of the constitutional reforms in the Ta'if Accord. Israel's withdrawal from southern Lebanon in May 2000, however, encouraged some Lebanese groups to demand that Syria withdraw its forces as well. The passage of UNSCR 1559 in early October 2004 - a resolution calling for Syria to withdraw from Lebanon and end its interference in Lebanese affairs - further emboldened Lebanese groups opposed to Syria's presence in Lebanon. The assassination of former Prime Minister Rafiq HARIRI and 20 others in February 2005 led to massive demonstrations in Beirut against the Syrian presence ("the Cedar Revolution"). Syria finally withdrew the remainder of its military forces from Lebanon in April 2005. In May-June 2005, Lebanon held its first legislative elections since the end of the civil war free of foreign interference, handing a two-thirds majority to the bloc led by Saad HARIRI, the slain prime minister's son.
 
 
Common Name: Lebanon Local Official Name: Lubnan
Abbreviated Name: Lebanese Republic Official Name: Al Jumhuriyah al Lubnaniyah
Official Script Name: Lebanon Local Common Name: Lebanon
Former Name: Lebanon Territory of: NA
 
Head of State: President Emile LAHUD
 
Government Type: republic
 
Independence: 1943 November 22 (from League of Nations mandate under French administration)
 
Constitution: 1926 May 23, amended a number of times, most recently Charter of Lebanese National Reconciliation (Ta'if Accord) of October 1989
 
National Holiday: Independence Day, 22 November
 
International Organization Participation: ABEDA, ACCT, AFESD, AMF, FAO, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITU, LAS, MIGA, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC, OIF, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNRWA, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO (observer)
 
Administrative Divisions: 8 governorates (mohafazat, singular - mohafazah); Aakkar, Baalbek-Hermel, Beyrouth, Beqaa, Liban-Nord, Liban-Sud, Mont-Liban, Nabatiye
 
Dependent Areas: NA
 
Legal System: mixture of Ottoman law, canon law, Napoleonic code, and civil law; no judicial review of legislative acts; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
 
Suffrage: 21 years of age years
 
Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches: Executive Branch: chief of state: President Emile LAHUD (since 24 November 1998) head of government: Prime Minister Fuad SINIORA (since 30 June 2005); Deputy Prime Minister Elias MURR (since April 2005) cabinet: Cabinet chosen by the prime minister in consultation with the president and members of the National Assembly elections: president elected by the National Assembly for a six-year term (may not serve consecutive terms); election last held 15 October 1998 (next to be held in 2007 based on three-year extension); note - on 3 September 2004 the National Assembly voted 96 to 29 to extend Emile LAHUD's six-year term by three years; the prime minister and deputy prime minister appointed by the president in consultation with the National Assembly; by agreement, the president is a Maronite Christian, the prime minister is a Sunni Muslim, and the speaker of the legislature is a Shi'a Muslim election results: for 15 October 1998 election: Emile LAHUD elected president; National Assembly vote - 118 votes in favor, 0 against, 10 abstentions Legislative Branch: unicameral National Assembly or Majlis Alnuwab (Arabic) or Assemblee Nationale (French) (128 seats; members elected by popular vote on the basis of sectarian proportional representation to serve four-year terms) elections: last held in four rounds on 29 May, 5, 12, 19 June 2005 (next to be held 2009) election results: percent of vote by group - NA; seats by group - Future Movement Bloc 36; Democratic Gathering 15; Development and Resistance Bloc 15; Loyalty to the Resistance 14; Free Patriotic Movement 14; Lebanese Forces 6; Qornet Shewan 5; Popular Bloc 4; Tripoli Independent Bloc 3; Syrian National Socialist Party 2; Kataeb Reform Movement 2; Tachnaq Party 2; Democratic Renewal Movement 1; Democratic Left 1; Nasserite Popular Movement 1; Ba'th Party 1; Kataeb Party 1; independent 5 Judicial Branch: four Courts of Cassation (three courts for civil and commercial cases and one court for criminal cases); Constitutional Council (called for in Ta'if Accord - rules on constitutionality of laws); Supreme Council (hears charges against the president and prime minister as needed)
 
Party Leaders: Ba'th Party; Democratic Gathering [Walid JUMBLATT]; Democratic Left [Ilyas ATALLAH]; Democratic Renewal Movement [Nassib LAHUD]; Development and Resistance Bloc [Nabih BERRI, Amal Movement leader/Speaker of the National Assembly]; Free Patriotic Movement [Michel AWN]; Future Movement Bloc [Sa'ad HARIRI]; Kataeb Party [Karim PAKRADONI]; Kataeb Reform Movement [Amine GEMAYAL]; Lebanese Forces [Samir JA'JA]; Loyalty to the Resistance [Mohammad RA'AD]; Metn Bloc [Michel MURR]; Nasserite Popular Movement [Ussama SAAD]; National Bloc [Carlos EDDE]; Popular Bloc [Elias SKAFF]; Qornet Shewan Gathering [a grouping with no individual leader]; Syrian National Socialist Party [Ali QANSU]; Tachnaq Party; Tripoli Independent Bloc [a grouping with no individual leader]
 
International Disputes: Lebanese Government claims Shab'a Farms area of Israeli-occupied Golan Heights; the roughly 2,000-strong UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) has been in place since 1978
 
Illicit Drugs: cannabis cultivation dramatically reduced to 2,500 hectares in 2002; opium poppy cultivation minimal; small amounts of Latin American cocaine and Southwest Asian heroin transit country on way to European markets and for Middle Eastern consumption 
 
 
 LEBANESE GEOGRAPHY
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Location of Lebanon: Middle East, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Israel and Syria
 
Continent: Middle East Land Area Total: 10,400 sq km 
Region: Middle Eastern Land Area Land: 10,230 sq km
Capitol City: Beirut Land Area Water: 170 sq km
      
Latitude: 033 50 N Border Boundary Land: 454 km
Longitude: 035 50 E Border Boundary Coastline: 225 km 
  
Arable Land: 16.35 % Pastures: 0.00 %
Crops: 13.75 % Woodlands and Forests: 0.00
  
Highest Elevation: 3,088 m Location: Qurnat as Sawda'
Lowest Elevation: 0 m Location: Mediterranean Sea
  
Largest City in Lebanon: Beirut Beirut Largest City Population: 2,012,000
  
Threatened Species: 23
 
Environmental Issues: deforestation; soil erosion; desertification; air pollution in Beirut from vehicular traffic and the burning of industrial wastes; pollution of coastal waters from raw sewage and oil spills
 
Environmental Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification, Marine Life Conservation
 
Irrigated Land: 1,040
 
Bordering Countries: Israel 79 km, Syria 375 km
 
Natural Resources: limestone, iron ore, salt, water-surplus state in a water-deficit region, arable land
 
Geographical Terrain: narrow coastal plain; El Beqaa (Bekaa Valley) separates Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon Mountains
 
Comparative Area of Lebanon: about 0.7 times the size of Connecticut
 
Lebanon's Geography: Nahr el Litani is the only major river in Near East not crossing an international boundary; rugged terrain historically helped isolate, protect, and develop numerous factional groups based on religion, clan, and ethnicity
 

 LEBANESE CLIMATE
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General Climate: Mediterranean; mild to cool, wet winters with hot, dry summers; Lebanon mountains experience heavy winter snows
 
Natural Hazards: dust storms, sandstorms
 
 
 LEBANESE ECONOMY
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Economic Overview: The 1975-91 civil war seriously damaged Lebanon's economic infrastructure, cut national output by half, and all but ended Lebanon's position as a Middle Eastern entrepot and banking hub. In the years since, Lebanon has rebuilt much of its war-torn physical and financial infrastructure by borrowing heavily - mostly from domestic banks. In an attempt to reduce the ballooning national debt, the Rafiq HARIRI government began an austerity program, reining in government expenditures, increasing revenue collection, and privatizing state enterprises. In November 2002, the government met with international donors at the Paris II conference to seek bilateral assistance in restructuring its massive domestic debt at lower interest rates. Substantial receipts from donor nations stabilized government finances in 2003, but did little to reduce the debt, which stands at nearly 170% of GDP. In 2004 the HARIRI government issued Eurobonds in an effort to manage maturing debt. The downturn in economic activity that followed the assassination of Rafiq al-HARIRI has eased, but has yet to be reversed. Tourism remains below the level of 2004. The new Prime Minister, Fuad SINIORA, has pledged to push ahead with economic reform, including privatization and more efficient government. The Core Group of nations has announced plans to hold a Donor's Conference in early 2006 to assist the government of Lebanon in restructuring its debt and increasing foreign investment.
 
 
GDP: $22,780,000,000 USD Currency: Lebanese pound
GDP per Capita: $6,000 USD Currency Code: LBP
GDP Growth Rate: 0.10 %
  
Currency Exchange Rate History: Lebanese pounds per US dollar - 1,507.5 (2005), 1,507.5 (2004), 1,507.5 (2003), 1,507.5 (2002), 1,507.5 (2001)
  
  
GDP of Agriculture: 12.00 % GDP of Industry: 21.00 %
GDP of Services: 67.00 %  
   
Inflation Rate: 2.40 % Population in Poverty: 28.00 %
Unemployment Rate: 18.00 % Tourism: 673,000.00 visitors each year
   
Consumption by lowest 10%: 0.00 % Budget Revenue in USD: $4,953,000,000 USD
Consumption by upper 10%: 0.00 % Budget Expenditures in USD: $6,595,000,000 USD
   
Electricity Production: 10,670,000,000 kWh Electricity Exports: 0 kWh
Electricity Consumption: 10,670,000,000 kWh Electricity Imports: 750,000,000 kWh

Electricity Production by Source:
 
Fossil Fuel Electricity Production: 96.86% Nuclear Electricity Production: 0.00%
Hydro Electricity Production: 3.14% Other Electricity Production: 0.00%
   
Oil Production: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Production: 0 cu m
Oil Consumption: 102,000 barrels per day Natural Gas Consumption: 0 cu m
Oil Exports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Exports: 0 cu m
Oil Imports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Imports: 0 cu m
Proven Oil Reserves: 0 barrels Proven Natural Gas Reserves: 0 cu m
   
External Debt: $26,000,000,000 USD Received in economic aid: $2,200,000,000 USD
  Donated in economic aid: $0 USD
   
Agricultural Products: citrus, grapes, tomatoes, apples, vegetables, potatoes, olives, tobacco; sheep, goats
 
Primary Industries: banking, tourism, food processing, jewelry, cement, textiles, mineral and chemical products, wood and furniture products, oil refining, metal fabricating
 
Industrial Growth Rate: 0.00 %
  
  
Import Amount in USD: $8,855,000,000 USD - petroleum products, cars, medicinal products, clothing, meat and live animals, consumer goods, paper, textile fabrics, tobacco
 
Import Partners: Italy 11.1%, Syria 10.7%, France 9.2%, Germany 6.5%, China 5.4%, US 5.3%, UK 4.4%, Saudi Arabia 4.3%
 
Export Amount in USD: $1,782,000,000 USD - authentic jewelry, inorganic chemicals, miscellaneous consumer goods, fruit, tobacco, construction minerals, electric power machinery and switchgear, textile fibers, paper
 
Export Partners: Syria 25.3%, UAE 11.4%, Switzerland 8.1%, Turkey 6%, Saudi Arabia 6%
 
    
GINI Index: 0.00%
 
Labor Force Number of People: 2,600,000
 
Labor Force by Occupations: services NA%, industry NA%, agriculture NA%
 
  
 LEBANESE COMMUNICATIONS
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Radio Broadcast Stations: 46 Number of People with Radios: 2,850,000
Television Broadcast Stations: 15 Number of People with Televisions: 1,180,000
Number of People with Mainline Telephones: 990,000 Number of People with Mobile Phones: 990,000
 
Internet Service Providers: 3,365 Internet Users: 700,000
 
Internet Country Code: .lb Newspapers: 107
Two Letter Country Code: LE Weights and Measures:
Phone Country Code: 961 Electricity Voltage: 110/220 Volts
  
Telephone Systems: general assessment: repair of the telecommunications system, severely damaged during the civil war, now complete domestic: two commercial wireless networks provide good service; political instability hampers privatization and deployment of new technologies international: country code - 961; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean and 1 Atlantic Ocean) (erratic operations); coaxial cable to Syria; 3 submarine coaxial cables
 
  
 LEBANESE TRANSPORTATION
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Highways: 6,198 km Railways: 401 km
Gas And Oil Pipelines: 209 km Waterways: 0 km
Airports: 5 Heliports: 0
 
Motor Vehicles: 448 per 1,000 people CO2 Emissions: 15,755,000 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  Per capita CO2 emissions: 5.00 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  
Merchant Marines: total: 39 ships (1000 GRT or over) 150,598 GRT/178,295 DWT by type: bulk carrier 4, cargo 18, livestock carrier 10, refrigerated cargo 1, roll on/roll off 3, vehicle carrier 3 foreign-owned: 4 (Greece 3, Syria 1) registered in other countries: 59 (Antigua and Barbuda 1, Barbados 1, Cambodia 6, Comoros 6, Egypt 2, Georgia 7, Honduras 1, North Korea 6, Liberia 2, Malta 10, Mongolia 1, Panama 2, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 4, Sao Tome and Principe 1, Syria 7, unknown 2)
 
Ports and Harbors: Beirut, Chekka, Jounie, Tripoli
 
  
 LEBANESE PEOPLE
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Population: 3,874,050 people type - nationality Birth Rate: 18.52 births per 1,000 people
Population Density: 351.00 people per sq km Death Rate: 6.21 deaths per 1,000 people
Population Growth: 1.23% per year Fertility Rate per Women: 1.90 babies born per woman
 
Population Male 0-14: 523,220 Population Female 0-14: 502,372
Population Male 15-64: 1,235,915 Population Female 15-64: 1,342,540
Population Male 65+: 122,155 Population Female 65+: 147,848
 
Population 0-14: 26.50% Literacy Rate: 87.40%
Population 15-64: 66.60% Literacy rate of Males: 93.10%
Population 65+: 7.00% Literacy rate of Females: 82.20%
 
Population that is Male: 47.00 % Population that is Female: 53.00%
Life expectancy at birth in years: 72.88 years Infant mortality rate - baby deaths per 1000 births: 23.72 Babies die per 1,000 births
Life expectancy at birth for Males: 70.41 years Life expectancy at birth for Females: 75.48 years
 
Rate of AIDS/HIV infection: 0.10% Number of people living with AIDS or HIV: 2,800
Number of people who died of AIDS: 0
   
Disease Risk:
 
Diseases:
 
Net Migration Rate per 1,000 people: 0.00
 
Nationality: LEBANESE
 
Ethnic Groups: Arab 95%, Armenian 4%, other 1% note: many Christian Lebanese do not identify themselves as Arab but rather as descendents of the ancient Canaanites and prefer to be called Phoenicians 
 
  
Primary Language: ArabiC
 
Other Languages: Arabic (official), French, English, Armenian
 
 
Primary Religion: Muslim
 
Other Religions: Muslim 59.7% (Shi'a, Sunni, Druze, Isma'ilite, Alawite or Nusayri), Christian 39% (Maronite Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Melkite Catholic, Armenian Orthodox, Syrian Catholic, Armenian Catholic, Syrian Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Chaldean, Assyrian, Copt, Prote
 
  
 LEBANESE MILITARY
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Branches: Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF): Army, Navy, and Air Force
 
Manpower Fit to Serve: 18 years
 
Manpower Available: 1,998,636 People
 
Manpower Fit to Serve: 1,687,532 People
 
Amount of Manpower Available each Year: 0 People per year
 
Expenditures: $0 USD per year
 
Expenditures as a Percentage of GDP: 3.10
 
 
Note: Phrasebase uses a variety of sources when compiling the facts and information presented above. This information is continually updated throughout the year.
 LEBANESE RESOURCES
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