Nearly one in every four people in Lebanon is a refugee. This number is staggering, yet not entirely unbelievable given the protracted and emerging conflicts in the Middle East. A rapid influx of refugees from Syria has catapulted Lebanon from the 69th largest refugee-hosting country to the third largest within the past five years. The country also hosts a large proportion of the world's Palestinian refugee population, comprising nearly 10% of the country's population.
Despite reforms, labour markets in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) have been unable to absorb the growing number of job seekers. Women and educated youth are particularly vulnerable to high unemployment. However, data on entrepreneurship and the private enterprise sector in the region have been virtually non-existent.