Mikati: ‘Main challenge’ is preserving trust in Lebanon

Premier seeks to improve ties with private sector

By Karine Raad

BEIRUT: Prime Minister Najib Mikati said Tuesday “the main challenge (for the current government) is to find the means to preserve trust in Lebanon” and improve ties with the private sector.

During a meeting with various ministers and prominent members of the economic, commercial and banking sectors, Mikati highlighted the importance of coordination between the government and the private sector to help rejuvenate the economy, particularly in the wake of former Premier Rafik Hariri’s assassination.

Mikati said several goals need to be achieved despite the Cabinet’s short-term status.

These consist of reducing socioeconomic and political pressures, addressing a letter to Arab brothers and friends across the world to reaffirm Lebanon is still capable and determined to maintain its reconstruction and modernization process, and setting a national economic plan that takes into consideration Lebanon’s particular characteristics.

Mikati stressed that statistics and available data from the past few weeks show that Lebanon has drawn monetary credit and transfers mostly from Arab countries, which proves the intention of Arab brothers and other friends to maintain cooperation in a way that guarantees the stability, development and progress of Lebanon.

The premier indicated that incentives for positive cooperation between the government and the private sector, represented by the economic committees, reflected the monetary stability achieved between the Central Bank and the Association of Lebanese Banks.

The head of the economic committees’ delegation, Adnan Qassar, said Mikati’s orientations converged with those of the delegation.