The European Union (EU) is represented in Lebanon by the EU Delegation, one of 139 EU Delegations around the world.
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Following the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty on 1 December 2009, the EU has set up a unified diplomatic service called the European External Action Service (EEAS). EU Delegations are part of the EEAS. The EU Delegation now represents the European Union as a whole, with the Head of Delegation or Ambassador accredited as the official representative of the EU.
The EU Delegation functions much like an embassy and represents the EU in its dealings with political issues, trade, development, cooperation, etc. Consular protection of EU citizens is provided by individual Member States Embassies and their Consulates.
Through its engagement with political actors, civil society, the private sector, academics, the media and citizens, the EU Delegation raises awareness of EU issues and concerns, and promotes the importance of the EU-Lebanon partnership among the Lebanese authorities and the broader Lebanese public. At the political level, the EU supports an independent, sovereign, unified and stable Lebanon, and encourages Lebanon to fulfil its international obligations and to implement an ambitious agenda of political, economic and social reforms.
The EU Delegation has four main tasks:
The Association Agreement signed in 2002 and the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) Action Plan constitute the main framework of current relations between the EU and Lebanon.
The EU Delegation was established in Lebanon in 1979 as the Delegation of the European Commission. It employs more than 50 European and Lebanese staff members and is headed by Ambassador Christina Lassen.
The EU, the Member States and the European Investment Bank currently execute a total budget of more than €2.2 billion of assistance to Lebanon, including approximately €1.3 billion of grants and €0.9 billion of loans.
The EU cooperation focuses mainly on promoting programmes which support political, economic and social reforms, local governance, demining and refugees. Efforts to reform key sectors such as security, justice, good governance, social protection, support to civil society, education, energy, environment, agriculture and fundamental rights are particularly encouraged since they all aim at supporting sustainable growth and at reducing regional disparities in Lebanon.
Welcome to all of you to the website of the Delegation of the European Union to Lebanon.
The European Union represents a unique model of political and economic integration of 28 Member States who have decided to work together for greater peace, security, prosperity and stability. It is an influential actor on the world stage, the world’s number one economy and integrated trade block, the biggest aid donor and a major high-tech hub. 500 million citizens who speak dozens of different languages live in countries that vary both in size and geography. But still, we all feel part of the European Union.
The EU and Lebanon have been working together for decades. Over the years, the EU has supported peace, security and stability in Lebanon. We have been working with state institutions, civil society, local authorities and the private sector to advance our partnership in supporting the necessary reforms in the country. We believe in Lebanon's youth and in creating more educational and professional opportunities for young men and women. We have advocated the promotion of good governance, the rule of law and fundamental rights, as we continued to enhance our support to the security agencies. We have encouraged sustainable development by promoting trade and business opportunities, quality infrastructure upgrades, agricultural and rural development, and the use of renewable energy.
Today, Europe and Lebanon are facing a number of common challenges. We work together in the fight against terrorism and radicalisation, as well as in addressing migration issues. We are supporting Lebanon to tackle the consequences of the large number of refugees that have sought refuge on its soil in the past few years. The EU is assisting Lebanon with humanitarian aid to the refugees as well as much needed basic services such as health, education, water, sanitation and solid waste to both refugees and the vulnerable Lebanese communities who are affected by the crisis.
As I begin my work here in Lebanon as Head of Delegation of the European Union, I look forward to working closely with all our partners to further deepen our cooperation and help build a functioning, inclusive and secure contemporary civil state.
I would like to invite you to connect with us by visiting our website where you will find information and news about our work in Lebanon and the world. You can also follow our work on our social media channels by visiting our Facebook page at facebook.com/EUDelegationLebanon and by following us on Twitter @EUinLebanon.
Christina Markus Lassen
Ambassador, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Lebanon
Julia Koch De Biolley
Jose Luis Viunesa-Santamaria