Lebanese Cabinet could destabilize economy if no work done: business leader

Published July 17th, 2015 - 05:00 GMT

Political groups should not obstruct the work of the Cabinet which risks destabilizing Lebanon’s economy, the leader of a coalition of business groups said Thursday.

“We emphasized that under no excuse is it permissible to disrupt the Cabinet’s work since the situation requires activating it (the Cabinet) to decide on strategic projects and agreements Lebanon urgently needs,” Adnan Kassar, head of the Economic Committees, told reporters after meeting with Prime Minister Tammam Salam.

“Therefore, no political faction should gamble with the Cabinet’s future.”

The visit comes two weeks after a shouting match erupted during a Cabinet session between Salam and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil over the decision-making system in the body.

The dispute originated when the Cabinet passed a law granting $21 million in funds to help farmers export their products while ignoring Free Patriotic Movement’s calls to discuss security appointments.

“We urge Prime Minister Tammam Salam to continue his constructive efforts ... to find a way to avoid the disruption of the Cabinet,” Kassar added, warning that any instability in the government may risk pushing Lebanon into a "dark tunnel.”

“Governmental instability poured its burden on the economic sectors in Lebanon,” he continued, revealing that the Economic Committees were planning to take new measures to combat economic deterioration.

Also Thursday, Salam discussed the assistance provided by the World Bank to Lebanon with Fred Belhaj, the organization’s Middle East director.

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