* Find my original Facebook post here.
Every couple of weeks, MarcoPolis – Country Reports for International Mediawill proudly profile a Lebanese hardworking citizen working for Lebanon.
Guess who was featured this time? The men who proved to me that the truly wise ones are indeed the firstborns. (Point taken Abdallah Yafi and Ghaith Yafi)
To use Abdallah Yafi’s words from the article, this is an elaborate reality check for all Lebanese:
“The World Bank in 2011 classified the ‘middle class’ in Lebanon as those who earn between $15,000 and $27,000 USD per year… This only accounts for 5 to 10% of the Lebanese people today, as 70% of the entire population generate less than $10,000 per year and 15% live in abject poverty” Yafi noted. “This means 85% of the country live below middle class levels today. In contrast, prior to the Civil War, the Lebanese middle class made up 50-60% of the population… What’s a country without a middle class? The high inflation, the excruciatingly low wages, the ludicrous real estate prices and the lack of major investments in productive sectors have terribly affected the Lebanese population” he added.
“As a result, the educated Lebanese, those who can constitute the backbone of the economic development, have mostly expatriated themselves in search for better horizons in more stable and prosperous nations, most of whom are literally next door, as they earn on average 32 percent more abroad than they do at home… Our middle class is basically abroad. So what is the government’s role? It is important for the government to give incentives to young people to stay and build themselves in Lebanon and build Lebanon instead of going abroad and building a foreign country. The government needs to be more active on the front of encouraging a middle class to thrive as this is the only way to encourage economic development.”
Having studied and worked abroad for more than a decade, the Yafi twins left their high-profile western jobs to come back to Lebanon and give their society their talents. They were two of the first to introduce e-commerce to Lebanon. They founded ScoopCity.com with a mission to help Lebanese consumers get to know and appreciate the inner workings of their city. So far their company has won various awards and appreciation winks. The portal was awarded the “Standard of Excellence for Outstanding Achievement in Web Development” by the International Web Marketing Association. A few months ago, Seeqnce.com named ScoopCity one of the top five most “worthy” startups in the MENA region to keep an eye on for “high growth” in the next five years”… and have articles written about them like this one…
Plus they decided to throw in my picture in that article because I “helped” them a bit at some point, but really it’s because they are that awesome.
Leaders like you Abdallah and Ghaith will make our country more prosperous.
I am so proud of my brother Abdallah Yafi for his wise attitude and incredible initiatives, and Ghaith Yafi for posing so well. You are truly both role models for our society, and could be models in general because you’re not too bad looking.
Please read the entire article about them here:http://www.marcopolis.net/faces-of-the-economy-abdallah-yafi-1204.htm