Monday 05 December 2016 American University of Beirut - Lebanon
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The CNEA secretariat[IF1]  participated in a seminar entitled " Unleashing the potential of the private sector in the southern Mediterranean countries ", jointly organised by The Euro-Mediterranean Forum of Institutes of Economic Sciences (FEMISE) and the Institute of Financial Economics.

This seminar took place at the American University of Beirut (Lebanon), on 05 December 2016, and was intended to identify the challenges facing the private sector in the Southern Mediterranean countries that operate in a context generally marked by significant macroeconomic instabilities as well as other impediments including the complex administrative procedures that hamper the development of SMEs. In this regards, three sessions and a round table were held with the participation of representatives from the research community, decision-makers, representatives from financial institutions, the private sector and international donors. Discussions during the sessions focused on the following aspects:

  • Analysing the macroeconomic environment in the southern Mediterranean countries and examining its impact on the development of the private sector.
  • Analysing obstacles that hamper the development of the private sector and SMEs. Emphasis was placed on some examples of good practices for developing and strengthening the private sector and SMEs , such as : The “Enhancement of the Business Environment in the Southern Mediterranean” (EBESM) project, the Lebanese initiative "KAFALAT",  which aims to facilitate the access of SMEs and start-ups to funding; and the Moroccan experience in private sector development through CNEA’s achievements.
  • Discussing the role of the international community in developing a dynamic private sector in the region and exploring new approaches from all the attending organisations namely: the European Commission, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and ANIMA.

At the end of this meeting, emphasis was put on the importance of adopting a holistic approach to ensure that policies adopted encourage the private sector, by stressing the need to provide incentives to support transition from the informal to the formal sector.