Democracy Lebanon

Policy Brief: New Decentralisation Framework for Sustainable Local Authorities in Lebanon

Lebanon has 1,058 municipalities, which is, in international comparison, a large number for a country of Lebanon’s size and population. This leads to a situation in which local authorities are chronically underfunded. This has been a trend in recent decades, which has become much more important in recent years and months in light of the ongoing economic, financial, and monetary crisis in Lebanon, and the Covid-19 pandemic which has substantially affected business activities and tax income.

Many of the small and medium sized municipalities lack the capabilities for service delivery and long-term project development. In 
Beirut, Lebanon’s largest municipality, the devastating blast of 4 August 2020 not only killed more than 180 people and injured 7,000, it also caused extensive material damage, estimated at around 15 billion USD, destroying thousands of businesses and leaving hundreds of thousands in need of housing and basic services.

This Policy Brief suggests pathways to overcome these challenges. To pave the way for the financial sustainability of local authorities in Lebanon, a new decentralisation framework should place local authorities and their communities at the centre of the 
reform, and dedicate a special ministry to local governance affairs, tasked with the provision of adequate monitoring and technical guidance.

To know more, please download the below attachements. 


DRI-LEB-DE-Policy-Brief-Fiscal-Decentralisation-Aug-2020-en Download
DRI-LEB-DE-Policy-Brief-Fiscal-Decentralisation_02092020_Arabic Download