Residency for foreign
property buyers suspended
Constitutional Council to hear appeal by parliamentarians
The Constitutional Council suspended Article 49 of the State 2018 budget, pending a final ruling on an appeal submitted by ten members of Parliament.
Article 49 grants residency to foreigners who purchase apartments valued at $500,000 in Beirut, and $332,000 outside Beirut.
On Tuesday a group of ten members of the Parliament lodged an appeal before the Constitutional Council to challenge the article.
These lawmakers are Sami Gemayel, Nadim Gemayel, Samer Saadeh, Fadi El-Habr, Elie Marouni, Serge Torsarkissian, Elie Aoun, Gilberte Zouein, Youssef Khalil, and Dory Chamoun.
The business community championed the article, saying it will help activate the slow property market, especially high-end units that have been in stock for the past few years.
Residency is already granted to businessmen who deposit an amount of $200,000 in local banks.
Massaad Fares, a member of the board of the Real Estate Developers Association in Lebanon (REDAL), said: “We are disappointed. We haven’t decided what to do yet but we will wait until after the elections.”
“It is unfortunate that politics is intervening in the economy. It is clear this is happening for reasons related to the upcoming elections,” he said.
Reported by Yassmine Alieh
Date Posted: Apr 26, 2018