Lebanon Businessnews News

Top 16 stories
for the year 2016
The year of the billions
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Contrary to belief that 2016 was a ‘sluggish’ year for the economy, it has been fairly positive, but not for all sectors. The private sector, municipalities, and banks have worked for a better future. Private firms and entrepreneurs took the electricity issue into their own hands to privately generate power. Solar power farms are beginning to pop up around the country. The World Bank injected $1.1 billion in loans for the Country Partnership Framework 2017-2022. The ‘deal of the century’ occurred when the Central Bank closed parallel transactions at the end of November of around $1.4 billion, or more. The fastest growing sector was the ICT market, which grew by a CAGR of seven percent to $436 million in 2016, with further growth expected in the coming few years. A $50 million plan is being worked on by Saida Municipality to increase the city’s retail sector. Agro-food exports to the European Union (EU) increased 17 percent in the first half of the year, reaching €58 million ($65 million). Artificial intelligence reared its head in the form of a humanoid robot called ‘Novot’. The robot, which was installed at Bank Audi’s Bab Idriss branch, is the first of its kind. To end the year, a newly formed Government was elected and installed in Parliament. Is this a signal that 2017 is ready to deliver the goods? We will wait and see.

The year’s top stories:

$14 billion raised by the Central Bank
$1.1 billion from World Bank
$1 billion real estate company to be launched
$1 billion stimulus from Central Bank
100 million m2 of property owned by municipalities
Price deflation for the first time
Balance of payments surplus for the first time since 2011
Second electricity firm targets 150 MW in Tripoli
Two mega projects worth $200 million
Solar power to light Tripoli
Up for grabs: Permits for 12 solar farms
ICT sector increasing at ten percent rate
Full health coverage for 64 years old and above
Saida to reorganize 1.4 million square meter land
Agri-food exports to Europe surged 17 percent
Date Posted: Dec 30, 2016
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