Lebanon Businessnews News

Industrial permits down four percent
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The Ministry of Industry (MoI) issued 666 industrial permits last year, four percent less than in 2015.

Licenses issued for the establishment of new factories reached 247. Of which food industries and construction accounted 47 percent.

Licenses issued to ‘semi-light’ industries (third category), reached 258 licenses, and 223 licenses were issued to ‘light’ category factories (fourth category).

Fady Gemayel, Chairman of the Association of Lebanese Industrialists (ALI), said: “Industrialists are more cautious in investing, especially that industrial exports have dropped 30 percent within four years.” Some of the existing factories are finding difficulties to survive, and others are closing their facilities, he said.

About 203 licenses went to the food industry (which tops the list) followed by 117 licenses for construction material industries, 61 for mining and quarrying, and 60 for chemical industries.

Gaby Tamer, Chairman of the Syndicate of Chemical Industries, said: “Investors’ appetite has decreased, due to the unstable economic situation in the region.”

Mounir Bissat, Secretary General of the Syndicate of Food Industries, said: “The food industrial sector remains the most feasible sector, because there is a continuous increase in consumption, coming from locals and Syrian refugees.” He said that industrialists are still able to export their products.

Bissat said that new establishments are mainly small projects. “We are not seeing huge investments anymore in the sector.”

According to Gemayel, the increase in the number of licenses provided to construction industries, in spite of the slowdown in the real estate sector, could be attributed to the fact that industrialists are preparing themselves to contribute to the rebuilding of Syria.

The Mount Lebanon governorate received the highest share of licenses (47 percent), mostly distributed in Metn. This was followed by Bekaa (25 percent), and the North (11 percent).

Industrial zones that gained the most licenses were in Shoueifat (27 licenses), followed by Zahle and Zouk Mosbeh (12).
Reported by Rania Ghanem
Date Posted: Apr 11, 2017
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