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HONORARY CONSULATE OF LITHUANIA Damascus - Syria Presented in Vilnius on 4 December 2007 by: Mr. Nawar Sukkar Honorary Consul General. Map of Syria. Syrian Figures. Area: 185,180 km2 Land boundaries: total: 2,253 km

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HONORARY CONSULATE OF LITHUANIADamascus - SyriaPresented in Vilnius on 4 December 2007by: Mr. Nawar SukkarHonorary Consul General
syrian figures
Syrian Figures

Area: 185,180 km2

Land boundaries: total: 2,253 km

Border countries: Iraq 605 km, Palestine 76 km, Jordan 375 km, Lebanon 375 km, Turkey 822 km

Population 19,314,747

Religions : Sunni Muslim 74%, other Muslim (includes Alawite, Druze) 16%, Christian (various denominations) 10%, Jewish (minor communities)

Ethnic groups:Arab 90.3%, Kurds, Armenians, and other 9.7%

syrian economy
Syrian Economy

Natural resources: Petroleum, Phosphates, Chrome and Manganese Ores, Asphalt, Iron Ore, Rock Salt, Marble, Gypsum, Hydropower

Economy growth: 2.9% in real terms in 2006

GDP (purchasing power parity): $78.04 billion

GDP (official exchange rate): $24.26 billion

GDP - real growth rate: 5.1%

GDP - per capita (PPP): $4,100

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 24.8%, industry: 25.1%, services: 50.1%

syrian economy1
Syrian Economy

Labor force: 5.276 million

Unemployment rate: 8.1%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 10%

Investment (gross fixed): 25.9% of GDP

Agriculture Products:Wheat, Barley, Cotton, Lentils, Chickpeas, Olives, Sugar Beets; Beef, Mutton, Eggs, Poultry, Milk

Industries: Petroleum, Textiles, Food Processing, Beverages, Tobacco, Phosphate rock, Cement, Oil seeds crushing

Electricity - production: 33.01 billion kWh

syrian economy2
Syrian Economy

Exports: $9.713 billion

Exports Commodities: Crude Oil, Petroleum Products, Fruits and Vegetables, Cotton Fiber, Clothing, Meat and Live Animals, Wheat

Exports Partners:Iraq 27.3%, Germany 12.2%, Lebanon 9.5%, Italy 6.6%, Egypt 5.3%, Saudi Arabia 4.7%

Imports: $10.54 billion

Imports Commodities: Machinery and Transport Equipment, Electric Power Machinery, Food and Livestock, Metal and Metal Products, Chemicals and Chemical Products, Plastics, Yarn, Paper

syrian economy3
Syrian Economy

Imports - partners:Saudi Arabia 12.3%

China 7.9%

Egypt 6.2%

UAE 6%

Italy 4.9%

Ukraine 4.8%

Germany 4.7%

Iran 4.5%

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $5.715 billion

Debt - external:$6.601 billion; note - excludes military debt and debt to Russia

Telephones Main lines: 2.903 million, Mobile cellular: 4.675 million

economic reform programme
Economic Reform Programme

The Government of Syria has implemented modest economic reforms in the past few years, including:

A new investment law

Establishment of a public organization for investment

Development and establishment of new Free Trade Zones

Cutting lending interest rates

Opening private banks

Establishment of private sector insurance companies

Banking secrecy law

A new income tax law

Special law for combating money laundering

Consolidating some of the multiple exchange rates

Raising prices on some subsidized items, most notably, gasoline and cement.

economic reform programme1
Economic Reform Programme

Full implementation of the Greater Arab Free Trade Agreement (GAFTA) since January 2005

Initialing the Syrian — EU Association Agreement in 2004

The Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Turkey, which follows the pattern of the Syrian — EU Association Agreement, entered into force in 2007

Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) was signed with Iran in 2005

Simplifying and enforcing foreign trade regulations, and working to completely eliminate the Negative list of imports (90% of the commodities have been liberalized till now, and efforts are ongoing for further liberalization)

Ongoing efforts on both national and international levels regarding the accession of Syria to the WTO

syria the eu
Syria & the EU

45.5 EU

55.5 Others


44.5 %of total Syrian Exports are to the EU

syria the eu1
Syria & the EU

25 % EU

75 % Others


25% of total Syrian Imports are from the EU

doing business with syria the agro food industry
Doing Business with SyriaThe Agro- Food Industry

Syria is well known for a wide range of fruits, vegetables, meats, grains and dairy products.

With investment on the rise and trade liberalization steadily being implemented, the agro-food sector in Syria provides extraordinary potential

The Syrian market is open for opportunities with foreign partners offering a wide scope of cooperation deals: investment ventures, licensing agreements, transfer of know-how and trade deals

This sector employs about 27% of the labour force directly and another 20% indirectly; and contributes to around 30% of the GDP. It also accounts for 20% of total exports

doing business with syria the agro food industry1
Doing Business with SyriaThe Agro- Food Industry

The agro-industry is considered the second largest manufacturing industry in Syria after the textile industry. It accounted for 31% of the total manufacturing value added

Syria has a long tradition in the agro-industry, and offers cheap and yet qualified labour force. Its high quality raw materials are in abundant supply, input costs are low and private entrepreneurship is deeply rooted within this sector.

Syria’s close location to Europe is a vital advantage, as it can benefit from the relocation of labor-intensive operations from Europe to neighboring countries

doing business with syria the agro food industry2
Doing Business with SyriaThe Agro- Food Industry

Fruits and vegetables are among Syria’s most plentiful products for food processing, and their exports go mostly to the Gulf countries.

Another promising resource for food processing is olive oil, which ranks Syria as the fourth in the world. Increasing fourfold between 1992 and 2000, olive oil needs new technologies and more innovative packaging and marketing to reach its potential export figures

Large European companies and global groups have set up very successful projects. Selected examples of these are the Spanish producer of olive oil “Aceites del Sur”, the French processed cheese manufacturer “Group Bel”, and “Nestle”

doing business with syria textile
Doing Business with SyriaTextile

The Syrian textile industry is increasingly a key source of export earnings for the country

Syria’s textile industry has many strong points including an abundance of skilled, experienced and inexpensive labor, compared to Europe

The production of yarns in Syria strongly relies on the country’s large supplies of cotton. Syria is a major producer of cotton (800,000 Tone/Year)

Production of cotton yarns increased significantly in the last few years. Total production of cotton yarns stood at 107,610 tones in 2004, an almost 50% rise in less than four years.

doing business with syria oil gas
Doing Business with SyriaOil & Gas

Syria’s first commercial oil field began production in 1968, but it was not until the mid-1980s that exports started

Oil has become a major pillar of the Syrian economy and its share of total exports has risen to over 60% in recent years

Syria’s oil production peaked at 604,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 1996 and has been in gentle decline ever since, with today production no more than 350,000 bpd

Refining capacity is currently 250,000 bpd at 2 refineries. A third plant is planned at Deir al-Zour to serve the east of the country

 Syria’s reserves were never large, and official sources now expect the country to become a net oil importer within 20 years

doing business with syria tourism sector
Doing Business with SyriaTourism Sector

Syria has the necessary potential to make its tourism sector as energetic as it is in many of its neighboring countries such as Lebanon or Egypt, if not more

Syria can be pictured as a huge open-air museum, with historic sites and monuments illustrating 20 different civilizations across the history of humankind

Syria, often called the “cradle of civilization”, is the home of the first alphabet ever, the home of the first encryptions, and the first library ever

Syria offers a wide spectrum of landscape ranging from arid deserts to mountains, green fertile land around the legendary Euphrates and other Syrian rivers in addition to a beautiful coastline along the Mediterranean

doing business with syria tourism sector1
Doing Business with SyriaTourism Sector

Syria’s urban and rural population offers worldwide famous hospitality, generosity and tolerance for foreigners. Visitors can also enjoy a wide variety of folkloric activities, traditional artisanship and renowned cuisine

The sites, which foreign tourists most commonly visit, include the cities of Damascus, Aleppo and Hama, the Crack des Chevaliers, the Euphrates River, the Mediterranean coast, and the Roman ruins in the desert at Palmyra

Deficiencies in the Syrian tourism services include a comparative lack of foreign language skills among Syrian workers

The government’s ambitious plan in terms of tourism aims to attract 5 millions tourists by the year 2010

investing in syria
Investing in Syria


  • Advancements in economic reform
  • Strategic geographic location
  • Stable and secure environment
  • Variety of natural resources
  • Acceptable infrastructure
  • Reliable and cheap labor force
  • Equipped industrial Zones
  • Taxation incentives, exemption and rebates
  • Several mutual agreements and treaties to encourage and protect investments
  • Low costs of production
investing in syria1
Investing in Syria

Types of Available Investments

  • Direct Investment: Fully funded by the investor in accordance with the investment law
  • Partnership investment: Local partner (public or private) with foreign investors in project finance methodology
  • B.O.T. investments type
projects open for investment in syria
Projects open for Investment in Syria
  • Industrial Investment Opportunities
    • Food industries
    • Packaging
    • Agro-industrial projects
    • Textiles and textile machinery
    • Spare-parts industry
    • Consumer products
    • Chemical and pharmaceutical industry
    • Petrochemical projects
    • Leather industry
    • Industry requirements
    • IT projects
    • Cement production
    • Car assembling and manufacturing
projects open for investment in syria1
Projects open for Investment in Syria
  • Infrastructure

- Industrial City of Deir Ezzour

- Tartous-Iraqi Borders Toll highway

- Railway Tracks investment

- Freight Sea Villages

- Aircraft and engine Services Centre

- International Airports Five stars Hotel

- Private or JV Passenger Airlines Co.

- Homs Airport

- Raqaa Airport

- Euphrates River water Pipeline


- Oil Refinery in Banias

- Oil Refinery in Deir Ezzour

- Natural Gas Production Plant

- Electric Power plants Expansion

- Hydro-Electric Plant

- Wind Energy Farms

projects open for investment in syria2
Projects open for Investment in Syria

Manufacturing industry

- Mixed Cotton spinning & Yarn thread production

- Textile Dyeing industry

- White sugar, yeast and medical alcohol factory

- Heat-resistant glass kitchen-ware (Pyrex)

- Solid waste recycling plant

- Milk & Diary production

- Ammonia-Urea Chemical Fertilizer Factory

- Triple Super Phosphate Chemical Fertilizer Factory

- Integrated Project for olive oil compressing and refining plant

- Squeezed & Condensed Grape and Cider Factory

- Modern Irrigation Material & Machinery Factory

- Drainage Water-Plastic Pipes Factory

- Tire Manufacturing Plant

projects open for investment in syria3
Projects open for Investment in Syria
  • Agricultural

- Fishery Production Project in Al Assad Lake

- Fruits and Vegetables Preparing

- Other Investment Opportunities


- Hama Boutique Hotel

- Lattakia Hotel

- Deir Ezzour Hotel

- Tartous Hotel

- Banaias Resort

- Rural Damascus Chain Hotels

- Lattakia Tower

- Aleppo Eco-Tourism Hotel

- Qadmous Hotel

- Hassakeh Hotel

- Swaida Hotel

- Palmyra Hotel

- Homs Hotel


Pleased to answer any query or question during the Reception