Lebanon’s agro-industrial sector expanded to reach $2.67 billion by the end of 2011, after posting moderate growth over the last five years, according to the Investment Development Authority of Lebanon.The sector generated 32.5 percent of industrial output in Lebanon and around 2.54 percent of the country’s GDP based on 2009 estimates, said a statement issued by the authority.
IDAL estimated the sector’s current workforce at 30,670, accounting for 23.3 percent of the industrial sector workforce and constituting the third largest employer in industry. About 4,700 companies are involved in agro-industrial activities, accounting for 20 percent of enterprises in the country and representing the largest share of industrial establishments in Lebanon, IDAL said.
Agro-food product exports account for around 11 percent of total industrial exports and have been growing at an average annual rate of 13 percent since 2001, the statement noted.
Arab countries account for 55.8 percent of agro-industrial exports, followed by Western Europe with 17.1 percent, Latin America with 16.5 percent, Eastern Europe with 4.8 percent and the United States and Canada with 3.4 percent. IDAL said that it has mediated four Greenfield projects in the agro-food sector, accounting for 10.8 percent of its total projects since 2004 with a total investment of $17.8m.