This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.
The size of the automotive market in Lebanon increased by 263 percent in 2021 in financial terms, with total imports valued at $1.1 billion $472 million in 2020, according to Lebanese Customs. U.S. automotive exports to Lebanon increased by 300 percent in 2021 to reach $307 million, representing 27 percent of total Lebanese automotive imports. The automotive market includes new cars, used cars, and automotive spare parts. The 2021 increase from 2020 has more to do with the low level of economic activity in 2020 as a result of COVID-19 rather than a surge of Lebanese imports. U.S. automotive exports to Lebanon in 2021 were roughly the same as in 2019. Analysts believe that U.S. automotive exports to Lebanon in 2022 and 2023 will mirror 2021. Buyers will focus on small electric and hybrid cars that have very low gasoline consumptions. Furthermore, Lebanese consumers will focus primarily on used vehicles; Lebanon imported 4,700 new cars in 2021, an 85 percent decrease from 2018. Sector contacts believe new car sales will continue to fall.
Table 2: Automotive Chart
|2020||2021||2022 (Estimate)||2023 (Projection)|
|Total Local Production||0||0||0||0|
|Total Exports||$72 million||$67 million||$60 million||$60 million|
|Total Imports||$472 million||$1,122 billion||$1.1 billion||$1.1 billion|
|Imports from the US||$102 million||$307 million||$300 million||$300 million|
|Total Market Size||$400 million||$1,055 billion||$1.04 billion||$1.04 billion|
(Total market size = (total local production + imports) - exports)
Units: $ U.S. Dollars, LBP Lebanese Pounds
Source: Lebanese Customs statistics – Section 17
Lebanese consumers will continue to favor used cars rather than new ones. Some industry analysts predict demand for electric and hybrid cars to increase given increasing gas prices. . Demand for U.S.-made Sport-Utility Vehicles (SUVs) will persist because of their ability to withstand poor road quality conditions throughout the country, competitive price, high quality, and long record of success in the market. Moreover, demand for U.S. automotive parts such as brakes, clutches, engine lubricants, and safety accessories will exist because of the demonstrated quality advantage of U.S. parts as compared to foreign competitors.
The U.S. Commercial Service provides a wide range of services, including Gold Key Service (GKS) and International Partner Search (IPS), which help U.S. companies explore and identify opportunities in Lebanon. Moreover, the U.S. Commercial Service organizes events and exhibitions to promote U.S. products and services in Beirut.
Contact for the Commercial Section that covers the automotive sector: Naaman Tayyar, Head of Commercial section, Email: Naaman.Tayyar@trade.gov.