Lebanon: From Free Market and Peace, to Interventionism and War

University of Francisco Marroquin, Guatemala City | January 14, 2019

In a series of presentations at the Francisco Marroquín University, Dr. Patrick Mardini discussed the impact of sectarian/religious institutions on Lebanon’s economic situation.

Dr. Mardini showed how Lebanon built an economic system based on small government, private initiative, and free market economy after its independence in 1943. This system managed to keep national peace since government had a limited ability to intervene in sectarian/religious matters. However, the widespread of socialist ideologies in the 60s led to bad policies, civil war, and an inflated government size which is today at the heart of the economic slowdown of the country. According to Dr. Mardini, Lebanon can be improved by changing the institutional factors that limit private initiative and competition.