RESOLUTION PC 322

FORUM: POLITICAL COMMITTEE

QUESTION OF: The situation in Lebanon

SUBMITTED BY: ITALY

CO-SUBMITTERS:Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Denmark, France, Greece, India, Iceland, Kenya, Mongolia, Montenegro, New Zealand, United States of America.

STATUSSubmitted

THE POLITICAL COMMITTEE,

Noting with regret that Lebanon’s economy has been further damaged by the 2020 Beirut explosion caused by large amounts of ammonium stored,

Deeply concerned by Lebanon’s unemployment rate of 25%, and an inflation rate of 17.9% that the Lebanese pound has been facing, 

Reaffirming the Security Council’s resolution 2539, titled Extension of United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon’s Mandate,

Recognizing the need of an elected government to replace the caretaker government status in order for Lebanon’s economy to become stabilized,

Alarmed by the ineffective taxations the government has tried to impose upon their citizens, resulting in national outrage and the need of financial assistance,

Viewing with appreciation that Lebanon and members of the UN pursued the organization of governmental elections to improve the political state and stability of society and the economy,

Emphasizing the need for member states to donate through liable sources to help Lebanon solve their economic issues,

Reiterating that all solutions put forth are merely a response to the prevalent humanitarian crisis and do not mean to hinder the authority of the nation and emphasising recognition of Lebanon’s sovereignty, integrity and independence,

Noting with deep concern the humanitarian issues which arise as a result of an unstable economic, social and political situation including food insecurity, poverty, unemployment and electricity shortages among others, 

Recalling past attempts to aid Lebanon such as the CEDRE conference, the International Support Group for Lebanon under UNSCOL, and the International Conference on Assistance and Support to Beirut and the Lebanese People,

  1. Recommends individual and global efforts on the continuous supply of food within compliance of FAO’s guidelines with actions such as but not limited to:
    1. preserving critical food supplies, humanitarian food, livelihood and nutrition assistance to vulnerable groups,
    2. expanding the use of food security monitoring systems to provide up-to-date information on the impacts of the crises and understand better who is most at risk,
    3. maintaining liquidity and promoting financial inclusion in rural areas by ensuring relief and stimulus packages along with expanding credit supplies,
    4. promoting the agriculture sector and taking necessary steps to ensure that the impact of the crises minimal, keeping in mind that the agricultural sector is a vital element in such economic conditions, especially for Least Economically Developed Countries (LEDCs);
  2. Asks the Lebanese Government to comply and coordinate with the International Monetary Fund’s statements about Lebanon’s economic situation in order to in overcome inflation, as well as its repercussions, to decrease the negative feedback loop, through the means of but not limited of : 
    1. restoring the solvency of public finances as well as showing transparency in government revenues, along with the missing funds from Banque du Liban by monitoring the central bank by prioritizing comprehensive audits of the bank’s activities,
    2. implementing a progressive tax policy that does not exacerbate the already depleting purchase power by enacting provisional contractionary monetary policies, such as the increasing of interest rates and reserve requirements for the Central Bank of Lebanon,
    3. restricting capital outflows while simultaneously increasing capital inflows in order to revitalise the Lebanese pound,
    4. encouraging foreign investments by applying high-interest rates, thus aiding capital inflow and providing sustainability to the Lebanese pound,
    5. methods to limit and prevent excessive government spending so as to ensure a reduction in the budget deficit, such as budgeting plans with the IMF, as well as conducting bi-monthly inspections to ensure stable money printing which would be also regulated by the IMF;
  3. Endorses the use of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and urges the future government, in coordination with active NGOs present in Lebanon, to further promote the use of the agricultural sector to combat food insecurity, and stabilize the local economy to the unemployed populations, whilst the reconstruction of cities and development of new industries occurs, by using means such as:
    1. education programmes funded by relevant NGOs regarding topics such as but not limited to:
      1. correct and efficient use of agricultural equipment,
      2. sale and purchase, focused primarily in local areas of produce,
      3. transportation of products to local markets,
      4. dangers of using excess fertilisers, herbicides and pesticides and consequent effects on the environment,
      5. use of suitable crops for the Lebanese climate and soil type, 
    2. rebuilding and rehabilitating food security national assets by:
      1. prioritizing the rebuilding of the grain silos at the Port of Beirut as a food security national asset
      2. ensuring the availability of temporary mobile grain storage units and the supply of strategic stocks of wheat with the international community to avoid supply shortages and price inflation
      3. facilitating access to seeds and arable land that are not yet exploited, including abandoned land, and encouraging farmers to produce cereals and wheat that is rainfed or supplementary irrigated
      4. supporting cooperatives to initiate service centers that supply collective services to members through a social enterprise modality, making consumption and production more sustainable,
      5. developing youth-tailored agriculture programs to facilitate the adoption and scale-up of digital and green technologies in the agriculture sector and encouraging national incentives for such programmes,
    3. strengthening local food systems by:
      1. exploring and promoting new business opportunities to encourage local production and replacing imported agriculture inputs by locally produced ones such as seeds, compost and irrigation systems
      2. accelerating the implementation of a farmers’ registry as a tool to contribute any kind of assistance to farmers in the future
      3. providing government subsidies to domestic producers of necessary goods, thus increasing domestic employment, output, and reducing prices for consumers,
    4. regulating food prices through the means of:
      1. establishing a legal framework and standards for perishable products as well as ensuring a ceiling shelf price for ensuring that basic food needs do not get targeted by inflation
      2. publishing weekly price lists to reduce market abuse and facilitate food access to the most vulnerable 
      3. issuing electronic in-kind food assistance cards to the citizens of Lebanon and expanding cash assistance programs to facilitate access to basic food needs for the nation
      4. encouraging direct sales from local producers to local consumers using digital technologies to connect them while not disregarding the fact that the aforementioned digital technologies have to be widely accessed by all its target audience for the system to work smoothly, which will also be regulated by FAO;
  4. Promotes the creation of the International Assistance to Lebanon Program (IALP), an international aid and funding programme, which will work in collaboration with United Nations Interim Force In Lebanon (UNIFIL), under the UN, that:
    1. will ensure donated funds are directed specifically towards the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) and NGOs, through the use of audits upon transactions supervised by third party independent organisations such as, but not limited to, the International Monetary Fund,
    2. raises awareness on current and legitimate NGOs and organisations which would be liable and viable recipients of funds such as but not limited to,
      1. the Lebanon Red Cross
      2. the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP)
      3. the Amel Association, which is an association that supports the most underprivileged populations in Lebanon;
    3. stresses the importance of financial aid and assistance to Lebanon, in an attempt to recruit more economic support;
    4. encourages relevant member states and organizations to extend debt repayment deadline, so long as economic progress and effort within Lebanon is observed and being determined by a third-party of economic advisers and inspectors from the World Bank that will:
      1. provide economic advice and suggestions to the implemented transition government, specifically to the Ministry of Finance
      2. ascertain that concrete measures to ameliorate the economic situation are being implemented by the national government
      3. write up monthly reports to Lebanese officials and the UN, detailing the economic situation, progress and challenges faced;
  5. Strongly suggests the government in power to adopt the measures outlined below in the attempt of rapid construction of damaged infrastructure throughout the country, in particular Beirut, as well as adopting long term aims for the development and strengthening energy sources:
    1. temporarily focusing 70 percent of the pre-existing metal industry and other industries of Lebanon on export and sales, and 30 percent of the metal industry on the manufacturing and distribution of needed materials for reconstruction, and gradually, once economic amelioration is achieved, increasing the share of material focused on reconstruction,
    2. increasing manufacturing production as economic stability is reached, through the means of increased employment;
    3. providing short term solutions to electricity shortages through the means of power barges to be implemented during the 3-4 duration of development and creation of hydraulic power plants which should sustain a long term stable solution for such issues.