This report presents the findings of the labour market study in Bar Elias and the Bekaa, focusing on the labour activities, initiatives, and aspirations of current B&Z beneficiaries and Syrian refugee youth and women heads of household respondents that could potentially be engaged through future interventions. It also presents a general overview of the formal employment sectors that Syrians can engage in, by law, as well as principles and approaches that could be adopted for the informal economic activities that Syrian refugees engage in.
In October 2014, Lebanon’s Council of Ministers adopted a comprehensive policy on Syrian displacement, one explicit goal of which is to decrease the number of Syrians in Lebanon by reducing access to territory and encouraging return to Syria. This ambition is currently being implemented through the December 2014 General Security Office (GSO) new set of entry requirements for Syrians and new rules for Syrian nationals already in Lebanon applying for and renewing their residency permits.
As the Syrian crisis enters the fourth year, there is a timely need to reflect on the wider implications on Lebanon. The influx of over a million and half Syrian refugees has brought a total of 400,000 school-age refugees to Lebanon. This dramatic demographic shift poses a formidable challenge to an education system suited to deliver education to a national student population of just over 900,000.