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July 13, 2015 | English | Carole Nakhle
Licensing and Upstream Petroleum Fiscal Regimes: Assessing Lebanon’s Choices

Doubts have been raised and criticisms continue to be made about Lebanon’s choice of upstream petroleum fiscal terms and strategies to award oil and gas licenses. This is not surprising given the fact that it is a completely new experience for Lebanon, a country often stuck in stalemates stemming
from political disagreements. Despite this, there are some internationally recognized guiding principles that Lebanese policymakers can follow.

Among them are that the government should consider adopting one law that governs offshore and onshore operations. The government needs to ensure that licenses are allocated in a climate of transparency and blocks should be awarded to companies that submit the most appropriate bids, not necessarily the most optimistic ones. In addition, all fiscal instruments—their rates and design, as well as the way they interact with other instruments—should be taken into consideration when assessing the Lebanon’s fiscal regime.

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