In this interview given to Ramez El Kadi on Al Jadeed TV, Dr Carole Nakhle, CEO of Crystol Energy, discusses the importance of the proper governance of the Lebanese oil and gas sector, and outlines the major steps ahead.
- The biggest mistake any government could make, including the Lebanese government, is to pin all their hope on the oil and gas sector especially when no discoveries have been made.
- Even if a discovery is found, first its commerciality needs to be appraised; if it proves to be commercial, then it can take several years to develop the needed infrastructure for production and exports. Lebanon is in dire need for structural reforms; its economy cannot wait that long.
- In the oil and gas industry, the exploration phase carries the most risk due to the geological uncertainty which cannot be eliminated even with the best technologies today.
- The overall governance of the oil and gas sector will dictate whether any discoveries could lead to positive spillovers to the Lebanese economy or not. Experience shows that countries with weak institutions have suffered from the resource curse, which has led to greater poverty, weaker economic growth, worse corruption and even conflict.
- The priority should be given to the local domestic market then an export strategy should be adopted depending on the size of the volumes produced.
Watch the discussion (in Arabic):
“Energy Crisis: A New Dawn for Lebanon?“, Dr Carole Nakhle, Jun 2022
“Major Setback for Lebanon’s Oil and Gas“, Dr Carole Nakhle, May 2020
“The Resource Curse Hits Lebanon Without the Resource“, Dr Carole Nakhle, Feb 2020
“Lebanon Oil and Gas“, Dr Carole Nakhle, Jan 2023
“Fuel crisis in Lebanon: Will Egypt be able to provide gas for Beirut?“, Dr Carole Nakhle, Jul 2021
“Should Lebanon still pursue its oil & gas exploration activities despite the climate change challenges“, Dr Carole Nakhle, May 2021
“The Oil & Gas sector of Lebanon: What we need to know with Dr Carole Nakhle“, Dr Carole Nakhle, Oct 2020