Local products for refugee assistance. Agreement with international organizations to encourage industrialists - Lebanon

Local products for refugee assistance
Agreement with international organizations to encourage industrialists
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International organizations have agreed to the request of the Ministry of Industry to give local industries preferential treatment when purchasing items for their social programs, which serve Syrian refugees.

Donor states, through international organizations like the UNDP, UNHCR, UNRWA, UNICEF, and WFP have a responsibility to support countries that welcome refugees, according to Minister of Industry Vrej Sabounjian.

Sabounjian said: “International organizations will buy products made in Lebanon to supply refugees. If certain products are not manufactured in the country, local traders could secure them from foreign markets.”

Local industrialists produce a wide range of products for daily needs including medicines, clothing, foodstuffs, books, mattresses, blankets, and space heaters. According to the agreement, they are requested to provide the goods and products for the refugees in high quality and at reasonable prices.

The United Nations spent about $1 billion on the Syrian refugees last year.

Sabounjian said that this agreement is a good achievement for the local economy, since it would benefit industrial institutions, because it will enhance their production and help them market their wares.

UNIDO will organize a workshop on February 13 to set the mechanism of the United Nation purchases, and the way local industrialists, including small and medium enterprises, could participate in tenders.
Reported by Rania Ghanem
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Date Posted: Jan 23, 2014