RESOLUTION PC 323

FORUM: POLITICAL COMMITTEE

QUESTION OF: The Situation in Lebanon

SUBMITTED BY: Palestinian Authority

CO-SUBMITTERS:China, Cyprus, Eritrea, Lebanon, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Niger, Paraguay, Russian Federation, Spain, Tajikistan, Turkey, Uganda.

STATUSApproved

THE POLITICAL COMMITTEE,

Noting with deep concern that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth in Lebanon has plummeted to -6.5% in 2019 and is estimated to drop low as -12% by the end of 2020,

Deeply regretting the explosion that took place in Beirut on 4 August 2020, which led to the death of approximately 200 people and injured more than 6,000 people as a result of its deadly outcome,

Fully aware of the need for sustainable solutions to tackle economic crisis that Lebanon is currently going through,

Deeply concerned by the fact that Lebanon’s economy is mainly dependent on imported products with a wide difference between the amount of money spent on imports compared to the amount of money earned from exports,

Alarmed by the problem of inflation with the consumer price increase reaching 120% during August 2020, drastically high compared to May 2020 when it was only 20%,

Welcoming the contributions of all member states on the subject improving and finding new ways to help Lebanon revive its economy,

Recognizing the urgency for the swift formation of a new government to be able to restore political, social, and economic stability in order to appropriately respond to the urgent calls of reform by the Lebanese people,

  1. Requests the renewal of the United Nations Strategic Framework (UNSF) for Lebanon that provided legal framework for the United Nations (UN) partnership with the Lebanese Government between the years 2016 and 2020, for another five years with the condition of:
    1. amending the principles and priorities of the Strategic Framework according to the current economic challenges that Lebanon is faced with such as but not limited to:
      1. the reconstruction of Beirut and humanitarian support
      2. the current economic crisis
      3. the urgent need for sustainable development
      4. economic dependency due to lack of exportation
    2. ensuring the application of the principles under this strategic framework through the supervision and collaboration of the UN on a recurring basis;
  2. Encourages the Division for Sustainable Development Goals within the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to work in jointly in order to promote sustainable development in Lebanon by means of:
    1. working collaboratively with Lebanese non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that make efforts towards promoting sustainable development by:
      1. providing assistance to the NGOs in needed areas which will be identified by the UNDP
      2. organizing seminars in which various NGOs can discuss and evaluate ways of improvement in a environment of teamwork
      3. encouraging the partnership of NGOs working towards achieving similar goals to accelerate Lebanon’s efforts towards achieving sustainable development
    2. encouraging individuals to take part in sustainable development promoting NGOs such as but not limited to Bassma, Green Hand and Ecoserv through promotional activities which will not require a significant amount of expenditure such as:
      1. the utilization of social media platforms for promotional and educational purposes
      2. opportunities in which the public can access information regarding the NGO and its causes, such as open-to-public seminars
    3. facilitating the extension of the National Renewable Energy Action Plan (NREAP) for Lebanon 2016-2020, for another four years with the help of the UNDP which will enhancing and revising the plan to create a more up to date version of it;
  3. Authorizes the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in invitational collaboration with the World Bank, G20, and other relevant international financial institutions and partners to address the exponentially growing financial debt of the Lebanese government, one of the main causes of inflation, to implement an international external debt suspension on Lebanon that will end 100 days after the adoption of the present resolution that can be later extended if necessary;
  4. Asks the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) in collaboration with the UNDP to Lebanon to craft and present an in depth report on the current economic status specializing in the foreign import crisis of Lebanon as well as further concrete sustainable development solutions on the issue so that the Political Committee and other UN organs can then implement in order to ease the economic crisis from an international perspective;
  5. Suggests the Lebanese government to work jointly with the IMF with invitational collaboration with the World Bank and its cooperative, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), to decrease the growing political tensions between the government and the public caused by the economic crisis, through the creation of an economical growth plan which will;
    1. hope member states to invest into the Lebanese market through means such as but not limited to:
      1. investing into the country’s key sectors and industries such as but not limited to: Banking, Tourism, Chemical Products, Metal Development, Agriculture, and Electricity
      2. investing in Lebanese stock exchanges such as but not limited to the Beirut Stock Exchange (BSE)
    2. include a spending programme that will be designed based on the economic needs of Lebanon and determine the amount of money that will be invested in each major sector according to factors such as:
      1. the investments already made in each sector since the spending programme will focus on dedicating most of its budget on sectors that haven’t been able to make much economic progress due to the lack of investments
      2. Lebanon’s capability and potential for economic success in that area since investment in sectors with high capability of economic growth pose more potential for the revival of the Lebanese economy
      3. the Lebanese government’s needs and demands to fill the economic gap in many crucial sectors that serve an important role for the country
    3. be inspected by IBRD officials to ensure that the loans given are used in manner that abides with the economic growth plan through supervision efforts that will consist of:
      1. periodic budget evaluations
      2. assessing the income and expense amounts of the Lebanese government, every six months period, to oversee whether or not the economical growth program’s intended positive effects are being achieved
      3. annual briefings with the IBRD where the yearly economic progress of Lebanon will be evaluated and areas which require improvement will be identified;
  6. Invites the Investment Development Authority of Lebanon (IDAL) to encourage the investment of foreign capitals by taking measures towards the marketing of Foreign Direct Investments by means of:
    1. reducing the tax rates for foreign capitals willing to invest in Lebanon by an amount which will be decided on by the IDAL
    2. ensuring the security of intellectual property rights by working in accordance with international legislations ratified by the Lebanese government on the matter, such as but not limited to:
      1. World Intellectual Property Organization Convention 
      2. Singapore Treaty on the Law of Trademarks
    3. collaborating with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Organization (UNCTAD) in order to facilitate:
      1. a suitable environment that will attract numerous foreign investors through UNCTAD’s technical aid
      2. the arrangement of conferences, seminars and expos that will aim to give additional information and assistance to foreign capitals that are willing to invest in Lebanon;
  7. Calls upon the creation of an support fund for Beirut that will aim to take away the burden of economically assisting the crisis that erupted in Beirut as a result of the explosion that happened on 4 August 2020, away from the already economically-struggling Lebanese government provided by all willing MEDCs in order to provide shelter and accommodation for people whose homes were damaged after the explosion, renovate museums, monuments and other major cultural and historically significant structures/areas that were damaged as a result of the explosion, such as but not limited to the reconstruction of the Beirut port to quickly facilitate the continuation of all export and import activities conducted through it;
  8. Asks that the Lebanese Ministry of Social Affairs work jointly with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) for the advancement of the application of the National Poverty Targeting Program (NPTP) adapted by Lebanon in 2011, keeping in mind that if this program is to be implemented in an orderly and functioning manner with the help of ESCWA, it can have various positive impacts on masses of people that go through extreme poverty and decrease unemployment rates amongst the Lebanese population;
  9. Further encourages the collaboration of the Lebanese government and the UN to present full transparency on the government spending of the money received from tax revenue and international donations;
  10. Calls for banks to extend the time of loans given in order to prevent a mass increase in the poverty rate until the economic crisis is more stabilized and citizens can repay by:
    1. increasing the pay limit from 6 to 12 months depending on every individual’s situation
    2. charging from 1 to 5% of extra interest for the banks to subsist
    3. asking the UN for a special extraordinary loan to keep sponsoring such loans;
 (Ethiopia)
  11. Supports emergency financial assistance to Lebanon in order revitalize the economy under these certain stipulations:
    1. The Lebanese government must vow to be completely transparent in all spending activity of the emergency assistance by:
      1. Reporting all spending within a bi-monthly form
      2. Cooperating in any UN investigations opened under probable suspicion of corruption or falsification
    2. Spending must cover these areas:
      1. 30% or more must be set aside for public infrastructure, 
      2. 30% or more must be allotted to social programs such as combating poverty, unemployment support, and other social security contributions,
      3. 20% or more must be allotted for public health and public safety measures such as proper healthcare, clean drinking water, reinforcement of food safety standards, ensurement of electrical power; (Jordan)