Poverty, Inequality and Social Protection in Lebanon

Publication date: 20 January 2016
Author: Nupur Kukrety, Independent Consultant

The impact of the Syria crisis on Lebanon is immense and multidimensional. The massive population influx has put huge pressure on the labor market and employment, while also driving up prices for consumables and the cost of shelter. The number of people living under the poverty line in Lebanon has risen by 66 percent since 2011, and the World Bank estimates that an extra 170,000 Lebanese became poor between 2011 and 2014. Around 350,000 Syrian refugees in Lebanon are estimated to be unable to meet their minimum survival requirements and another 350,000 Lebanese live on less than $1 per day. As people living in extreme poverty, they are more vulnerable to homelessness, illness, malnutrition and risky coping strategies.

This report is the result of research by Oxfam and the American University, Beirut in an effort to gain a better insight into the lives and struggles of poor Lebanese households alongside Syrian and Palestinian refugee populations in Lebanon.  It assesses the policies and programs implemented by the government and international donors to provide a level of support and social protection. This research contributed to the Oxfam briefing paper ‘Lebanon Looking Ahead in Times of Crisis'.