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Lebanon Opportunities

Lebanon Opportunities August 2017

Lebanon Opportunities is a quarterly business magazine that covers: Finance, Real estate, Economy, and Local business. Lebanon Opportunities has tens of thousands of readers in Lebanon and across the globe. It is the prime local business magazine in Lebanon in terms of readership, advertising, and name-awareness. Lebanon Opportunities is written to a target of small business owners, entrepreneurs and middle management, as well as to Lebanese living abroad. It aims at bringing complex business issues in a simple manner understandable by readers who are not experts and whose English language is not the mother tongue.

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3 min
it’s good to be bad

BAD SALARY AND TAX MEASURES ARE GOOD The salary scale ordeal, engendered with a slew of taxes, has finally passed the vote of Parliament with an overwhelming majority. With a few exceptions, parties from all sides have voted for the measures. Bar an unexpected rebut from the President, it has become law. Most experts, politicians, and the press have judged the measures to be a fiscal catastrophe. And it is. But we agree with the passage of these measures nevertheless. No matter how bad, the measure will add around $1 billion to disposable income, which with a multiplier effect could very well double (!) the growth in GDP. The standard of living of most public sector employees is dismal, and it is a social duty to improve it. The slow economic…

1 min
bits & bytes

SOUND BYTES Supporting SMEs is a priority Financial whales are roaming in our calm waters Speaker of Parliament Nabih Berri President Michel Aoun It time to promulgate a law that preserves the cultural heritage of buildings Prime Minister Saad Hariri Many jobs will disappear due to a changing world Ghassan Hasbani, Vice Prime Minister We have to focus on liberating citizens from need Gibran Bassil, Minister of Foreign Affairs Tourism is much better now in comparison with the last five years Avedis Guidanian, Minister of Tourism This government will enter the Guinness Book for corruption Alaaeddine Terro, MP and former Minister of the Displaced Legitimate companies are dwindling and illegitimate ones are growing Mohamed Choucair, Chairman of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce We will close down all illegitimate companies Raed Khoury, Minister of Economy and Trade I worry that labor syndicates…

11 min
in good company

DEMAND ON LOGISTIC COMPANIES IS FLOURISHING The Logistics business is growing rapidly. Demand from distribution and wholesale companies for outsourcing logistic companies is increasing, especially among foreign brands dealing with this model abroad. Ziad Harb, Regional Vice President at Beirut Cargo Center (BCC) Logistics, said: “The international trend is outsourcing third party logistics. The distributor-client can focus on its core business and leave the logistics headache for someone else to handle.” Companies that are family-owned, favor the close seller-buyer relationship. But Magdi Ghossainy, Deputy General Manager at Radec Logistics, a third party logistics (3PL) company, said: “These businesses once had owners whose mentality was traditional. The second and third generations are changing things. They are now aware that it is better to use a third party.” The logistics business is mainly…

23 min
money & banking

$3 BILLION RAISED BY CENTRAL BANK OPERATION The Central Bank (BDL) started an operation in June – still ongoing – to replenish foreign currency reserves lost since the beginning of the year. The operation yielded $2.3 billion in June, according to a Bank Audi newsletter. It has surpassed the $3 billion mark since its debut, according to a banking source. The operation involves getting banks to make simultaneous deposits at BDL in lira at one percent above market rates locked for at least seven years, and in U.S. dollar at one percent above market rates, locked for at least ten years. The Central Bank has seen, at one point earlier this year, more than a $3 billion drop in foreign exchange reserves since the beginning of the year. “The money flight…

3 min
matters of fact

BROKEN PROMISES ON PLEDGES FOR REFUGEE AID The international community is falling behind in its pledge to help secure more than $2 billion in funding to cover projects that aid Syrian refugees and vulnerable host communities. The UN’s Inter-Agency Coordination Office (UN-IAC) said out of the appeal for $2.75 billion in funding requirements for 2017, only eight percent has, up to the end of March, so far been received. Food security received the highest allocation, with $49 million, followed by education. The energy sector, which was designated as a separate sector for the first time since international assistance for the country began, has yet to receive any funds. Earlier this year, a study by the UNDP and the Ministry of Energy and Water showed that Syrian refugees consume energy the equivalent…

2 min
people on the move

CARLOS CHAD GENERAL MANAGER, DEMCO PROPERTIES Carlos Chad is now General Manager of Demco Properties. Previously, he was the Sales Director at Waterfront City for Majid Al Futtaim. Chad has 11 years’ experience as an Asset Manager at Bank Audi. “I am going to work on the business development of Demco, identifying new products and putting them under the spotlight. I will work with the team to export the company’s expertise abroad through its operating branch in Los Angeles.” Chad holds a Master of Entrepreneurship from Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales (H.E.C) in France. JOSIANE ABBOUD has been appointed Product Manager at Al Mawarid Bank. She was previously Head of Business Development and Deputy Head of the Retail Department at Middle East & Africa Bank (MEAB). Her skills include portfolio management, risk…