Caretaker Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil said Sunday at the conclusion of the Arab economic summit that e-commerce will play an increasingly greater role in Lebanon and in the region.
The shift in focus toward digital and information economies is aimed at reducing unemployment, and in particular youth unemployment, Bassil told those at the Arab Economic and Social Development Summit in Beirut.
Secretary-General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit said that he was pleased with the topics addressed during the summit, but remarked that “it is not easy to summarize what was agreed on at this moment because a list of 29 items was read and approved.”
Aboul Gheit said that the summit’s greatest success was President Michel Aoun’s plan to establish an Arab Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Earlier today, Aoun called on Arab institutions and financing funds to meet in Beirut within three months to discuss the reconstruction of Arab states ravaged by war and put in a place a plan for the joint fund's establishment.
The second major outcome of the summit, according to Aboul Gheit, was the Kuwaiti initiative to launch a $200 million investment fund to support technological developments and digital economies among Arab nations, of which the Gulf country says it will contribute $50 million. Qatar's finance minister pledged $50 million to the fund.
He also thanked the Qatari Emir, Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, for making “a political gesture by breaking the siege of Qatar” in order to attend the conference.
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