China and UNDP partner in Lebanon to provide business opportunities and access to markets for women and youth

August 12, 2021

Beirut, 12 August 2021: The Government of China and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are partnering in Lebanon to support COVID-19 socio-economic recovery, particularly targeting women and youth under the framework of South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund (SSCAF). With financial assistance from the Government of China, UNDP will support the development of sustainable livelihood and economic opportunities, through the provision of business development services and access to markets.

Lebanon is facing currently a multi-layered and unprecedented crisis that has resulted in rapidly growing vulnerabilities. According to ESCWA, it is estimated that more than 55% of Lebanon’s population is trapped in poverty as the unemployment rate, especially among the youth and women, has significantly risen. The changing economic and social situation continues to exacerbate pre-existing gender inequalities.  According to the 2021 World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index Report, Lebanon ranks 132 out of 156 countries as one of the highest gender gaps in the world.. Additionally, evidence from UN Women estimates that the number of jobs lost to women is 106,750, and accordingly the number of employed women is expected to drop by 22 %.

In this context, the new partnership with the Government of China will (1) improve the livelihoods of women and youth engaged in productive sectors in Lebanon; (2) build the capacity of Micro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) and cooperatives in business management and e-commerce; (3) strengthen Business Development Services institutions; (4) expand access to markets through an e-commerce platform; and (5) facilitate access to the Chinese market.

“As Lebanon is suffering from multiple crises, the Chinese government is partnering with UNDP to make active efforts to improve the immediate situation of Lebanon, primarily to provide support to women and youth with economic support. E-commerce will bring convenience to trade and financing and is an effective way for the Lebanese people to increase their incomes and achieve sustainable development” reiterated Qian Minjian, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Lebanon.

“This is our first partnership in Lebanon with the Government of China, and we look forward to working together to improve livelihood opportunities across the country. By providing economic opportunities and access to new markets, we will be supporting women and youth in mitigating the impact of the multiple crises in Lebanon, so that no one is left behind” added Celine Moyroud, UNDP Resident Representative.

Over the course of the last four decades, UNDP has been a privileged global partner to the Government of China. UNDP’s work under the Strengthened Partnership agreement focuses on several key areas, among them are global development issues and private sector engagement. In addition to partnering with the Government of China to address development challenges at home, the UNDP's goal is also to support China's contribution to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through South-South cooperation and experience sharing.

For more information, please contact

In UNDP – Lebanon        |  Rana Moughabghab      | |  +961 3 835 351

UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations to build integrated, lasting solutions for people and planet.