Lebanon - Country Commercial Guide
Medical Equipment

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2020-09-29

Overview

According to the Lebanese Customs Authority, Lebanon imported medical equipment valued at $337 million in 2019, of which $71 million, or 21 percent, was of U.S. origin.  Total medical equipment imports to Lebanon decreased by 8 percent in 2019 compared to 2018. 

Given that the local financial sector has imposed strict controls on capital outflows, experts predict a major decrease in imports in general to Lebanon.  Imports in the first half of 2020 have already fallen by 50 percent compared to the same period in 2019.  With the destruction of the Port of Beirut, analysts expect imports to fall even further.  However, there is still high demand for medical equipment in the aftermath of the August 4 explosion and the spread of COVID-19.  The Central Bank of Lebanon has promised to essentially subsidize (by making hard currency from its foreign reserves available) the imports of medicine and medical equipment until October 2020. 

Table 3: Medical Equipment Chart

 

2018

2019

2020 (Estimate)

2021 (Projection)

Total Local Production

$1 million

$1 million

$2 million

$2 million

Total Exports

$17 million

$15 million

$16 million

$10 million

Total Imports

$366 million

$337 million

$152 million

$125 million

Imports from the U.S.

$73 million

$71 million

$44 million

$30 million

Total Market Size

$350 million

$323 million

$138 million

$117 million

Exchange Rates

LBP1507.5

LBP1507.5

LBP1507.5

LBP1507.5

(total market size = (total local production + imports) - exports)

Units: $ U.S. Dollars, LBP Lebanese Pounds

Source: Lebanese Customs statistics – Section 18

Leading Sub-Sectors

According to local experts, U.S. medical equipment products are characterized by their high quality and competitive value.

Opportunities

Lebanon is an ideal location to establish a regional office to cover the Levant, including Iraq, although controls on the flow of capital may make this difficult.  The Lebanese market has traditionally been used as a platform for testing U.S. products prior to introducing them to the rest of the Levant market. 

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 opportunities in Lebanon.

Web Resources

Ministry of Public Health

Lebanese Customs Administration

U.S. Commercial Service

Contact for the Commercial Section that covers the medical equipment sector: Naaman Tayyar, Head of Commercial Section, Email: Naaman.Tayyar@trade.gov