Additional information: LOGI campaign 2018

Translation to ARABIC available at the bottom of the page.

[1] What you need to know about public consultation

       a- What is public consultation?

It is a participatory systematic process where government and decision makers engage and share their knowledge about issues with people that are not involved in decision making and policy making.

       b- Who does it involve?

Decision makers, non-governmental organization, experts, media and all other interested citizens.


       c- What is its aim?

The goal is to improve transparency, to increase the sense of responsibility and engagement of the citizens and accessibility to information.


       d- Why is it done?

  • It raises the awareness and increases knowledge of citizens around important issues.

  • It increases the confidence and trust in political system

  • It helps decision makers in the decision making process

  • It reduces conflict by seeking consensus on key issues.


       e- What are main criteria of public consultation?

  • It must have a unique goal of leading to better results and more- knowledgeable/informed citizens.

  • It should be inclusive whereby citizens from different backgrounds and expertise in addition to people affected by the proposed issue are invited to learn more and to provide their feedback and opinion.

  • It should be genuine and take into consideration the different opinion.[1]


       f- What are the different forms of a public consultation?

* Before any process of public consultation, the organizers must ensure to spread the background information about the topic and present the different arguments. Public consulation can take the form of:

  • Public opinion polls

  • Online surveys

  • Citizen assemblies or forums[2] 


       g- Are there examples from the oil and gas sector?

  • Open consultation about areas for oil and gas exploration in Australian waters[3]


[2] What you need to know about a National Strategy

       a- What is a national oil and gas strategy?

The national oil and gas strategy is a very important document that needs to be developed by the government upon the discovery of natural resources.

The policy covers both upstream and downstream ares, addresses areas of specific national interest, and incorporates various safeguards to avoid some of the negative aspects of oil and gas production (health and safety, environment, human resource development, institutional capacity building, prudent resource management, and fiscal and economic accountability, among others)


       b- What is its aim?

It aims at setting a high standard for the future governance of natural resources.


       c- What does it include?

  • An overall vision of how the government intends to use its natural resources in a sustainable manner to improve the livelihood of its citizens and future generations.

  • A set of principles, and a high level governance guide.


       d- What are some examples of a national oil and gas strategy?

  • Uganda's national oil and gas strategy accessible here.

  • Botswana's national oil and gas strategy accessible here


[3] Why did LOGI and Kulluna Irada launch the campaign now?

Now that Lebanon has awarded the licenses to international companies, it is quite timely for the government to start thinking where to go from here. It is the time to call upon the government to put a national strategy (read more about national strategy in Question 2).

What urged us to call for this is the rush in proposing flawed draft laws without any consultation- which should be done in our democratic country. The government should state how it plans to use the revenues from its natural resources. Does it plan to improve education, health, infrastructure or a combination of these? This will become clear upon putting a national strategy.

Prior to the campaign, we openly reached out to decison makers telling them about our position on passing these flawed draft laws. We felt what we were saying was falling on deaf ears.  As part of our advocacy, we reached out to the public so we can inform them .

There is risk that Lebanon will encounter a resource curse if it does not govern its resources in a sound manner. LOGI’s role is to makes sure to that Lebanon does not fall prey to this curse. Setting a national strategy that everyone endorses, informing the public and setting a process for public consultation are ways to have clarity and avoid this curse.


[4] All you need about Transparency

       a- What is transparency?

Transparency is a tool rather than a goal. This tool will help in turning the resources into a sustainable development for the country.

Transparency is when information is published, disclosed and accessible to the public. However, disclosing information does not guarantee having a transparent sector; there are conditons to be met. According to the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI), to have effective transparency, the disclosed information has to be timely, accessible, relevant and accurate.[4] 


       b- What is the aim behind having a transparent sector? 

  • To promote accountability: if the information is available then the public is able to monitor the activities and therefore hold the stakeholders accountable.

  • To provide an oversight mechanism


       c- Why should the information be timely and relevant?

  • In order to provide feedback, the public must have the necessary background information disclosed and available. The reader must be able to analyze, respond and have an opinion around certain matters and decisions to be taken. However, if the information is disclosed after the decision has been made or within a short period of time, then the public will fail to express its opinion on the matter.


       d- Why should the information be accurate?

  • In order for the public, organizations, government and other stakeholders to use the disclosed information, it must be accurate and clear. Building an advocacy approach based on inaccurate or unclear information will weaken the entity’s position and affect their credibility.


       e- Why should the information be accessible?

  • In order to analyze the data, the data must be in an editable format. An example would be a huge table comparing quantities and prices of oil and gas along several years. To be able to use, calculate and analyze this data, these numbers have to be extractable. In this case, the table has to be made available as an Excel file and not a PDF document.


       f- Are there any initiatives pushing for Transparency in the extractive industries?

Yes, to name some:


[5] All you need to know about contract transparency

       a- What are contracts?

Even though oil and gas resources are public property (belong to the people), the government is the representative of the country when it comes to this sector. This means that the government is responsible for signing contracts, licenses and agreements with the international companies that will explore the nation’s resources. These contracts and licenses give the companies the right to “explore” and search for natural resources in the nation. In addition, they put the rules for the relationship between the two sides. Contracts usually contain details about local content, production timing, fiscal terms, environmental impacts among other important matters. [5]


       b- What is contract transparency?

In resource rich countries nowadays, there is a need and a demand from international organizations to disclose the legal documents that define the relationship between a government and other stakeholders mainly the international companies. Contract transparency  is when decrees, laws, contracts, licenses and legal documents governing the sector are made available for the public. Being the co-owner of the natural resources, the citizen has the right to understand the contracts, the nature of the relationship and the terms of agreement [6].


       c- Why is contract transparency important?

With secrecy and opaqueness comes a high risk of corruption and mismanagement. In the absence of contract transparency, citizens and organizations fail to monitor that the conditions and terms are being implemented. This can lead to corruption since deals can be sealed without anyone knowing.


       d- Is there a requirement for Lebanon to publish its signed contracts?

In January 2017, the Lebanese government announced its will to implement the EITI (Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative). In addition, there has been a lot of talk about the government working for a transparent oil and gas sector.

According EITI requirements, achieving transparency is linked to contracts and laws. Which is why, the EITI standards encourage nations to disclose of licences, contracts and legal document that show rules of exploring oil and gas resources along with a list of necessary documents (legal provisions, references to publications…) [7].









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