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Lebanon Opportunities

Lebanon Opportunities January 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
happy good year

Yes, this is going to be a good year…Unless it is not going to be. We are being promised a lot of positive developments...Unless they fail to happen. The predictable unpredictability of our environment has put to shame even the cleverest clairvoyant. But you can rely on this issue, and on what is written here below. Unless, of course, something else comes along! IN POLITICS The year is starting with a fresh (figure of speech) President, a Cabinet that has just obtained a vote of confidence (from its own members), all based on an ambitious program to deliver everything we ever wanted in under six months. A new electoral law will be approved…Maybe. It will be based on a proportional system. Not completely. Anyway, the parties are negotiating on what the election…

1 min
bits & bytes

SOUND BYTES We must listen to civil society and to the silent majority, whose silence encourages the perpetuation of wrongdoing President Michel Aoun We shall increase Internet speed twentyfold Prime Minister Saad Hariri Our support for Lebanon is tangible – not just mere words Jean Marc Ayrault, French Minister of Foreign Affairs There is a project to bring a third electricity-producing ship Mevlüt Çavu?o?lu, Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs I will continue the good work of my predecessor Ghassan Hasbani, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Public Health I have a comprehensive and ambitious economic vision Raed Khoury, Minister of Economy and Trade The country is starting to recover Melhem Riachi, Minister of Information I will rely on the bible of electricity set by Gibran Bassil Cesar Abi Khalil, Minister of Power and Water I will be biased toward Armenians. Saying otherwise, no one will believe me Avedis…

14 min
in good company

MEA TO ADD FOUR NEW AIRCRAFT Middle East Airlines (MEA), the national flag carrier, plans to add four new aircraft to its fleet. The firm will either buy or rent the planes. Two will be delivered in 2019, and the remaining in 2020. According to Mohammad El Hout, Chairman of MEA, negotiations are in the final phase. MEA said that it would come to a decision this month regarding whether the type of aircraft will be Airbus or Boeing. MEA currently has a fleet of 18 aircraft, owned or rented. El Hout said that if GCC countries lift the travel embargo and tourists return to Lebanon, at least seven more planes would be required. MEA is also in negotiations for the purchase of a second flight simulator, with delivery plans by…

6 min
money & banking

EUROMENA CLOSES THIRD FUND FOR $150 MILLION EuroMena said it has completed the second and final closing of its third fund EuroMena III for a total of $150 million. As of last month, Euro- Mena III had invested in three companies at a total of $60 million, the company said. These companies are in the retail and banking sectors, as well as the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector. The companies operate in Nigeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, and Lebanon. “We expect the Fund to be fully invested by end of 2017,” said Romen Mathieu, Managing Partner of EuroMena. The investment carried out by EuroMena III in Lebanon consisted of acquiring a stake of around three percent in Credit Libanais for $20 million. Euro- Mena said last June that it had obtained…

3 min
official business

NAAMEH LANDFILL NOW GENERATING POWER Naameh landfill waste is being used to generate more than six megawatts of electricity through seven production units. Located onsite, the plant is connected to 15 kilovolt transmission lines that transport the electricity to neighboring villages. “The gas is enough to run the plant for the next ten years,” said Kamal Hayek, Chairman of Electricité du Liban (EDL). Nabil Jisr, Chairman of the Council for Development and Reconstruction (CDR), said that the plant is one of a kind locally. L0117-21 ITALIAN LOANS FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY AND BIOSPHERE Italy has announced a €5 million ($5.5 million) soft loan to be granted for the implementation of renewable energies in residential buildings. The loan will be pooled into the National Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Action (NEEREA) mechanism funding. NEEREA loans are…

3 min
matters of fact

$3.4 BILLION IN PROJECTS OVERSEEN BY CDR The Council for Development and Reconstruction (CDR) is supervising $3.4 billion worth of public works, according to its Progress Report 2016. The value of all the works, completed and underway, since 1992 is $8.7 billion. Works are divided over four sectors: Basic services, infrastructure, productive sectors, and socioeconomic sectors. The sector that received most funding with contracts underway is basic services, whereby $2 billion worth of projects are being executed. Basic services include solid waste, wastewater, and potable water. Work will be on the construction of Bisri Dam and potable water networks in Zahleh, Akkar, and Jabal Amel. The water station at Dbayeh will also be expanded. The CDR will also see the construction of a treatment plant and networks in Kesrouan, al Ghadir,…