NNA - The Ministry of Economy and Trade announced, in an issued statement on Saturday, that it is analyzing and reviewing, in cooperation with ESCWA, trade policies for Lebanon and bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, in collaboration with the relevant ministries.
In this context, a meeting was held on January 19, 2023, attended by Caretaker Minister of Economy and Trade, Amin Salam, and the Secretary Executive Director of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), Dr. Rola Dashti, in the presence of senior officials from the Ministries of Economy, Trade, Industry, Agriculture and Finance in the ESCWA building in central Beirut.
It was decided to form a technical committee to submit proposals for what should be amended to these agreements, in addition to issuing recommendations in the field of restructuring customs duties.
Minister Salam stressed "the need to work seriously to develop policies that are compatible with the current stage at the local and regional levels, and to advance the Lebanese economy from an economy that relies on imports to a diversified and competitive economy capable of exporting and attracting foreign."
He added: "Despite the different trends and opinions, everyone agrees that the time has come not only to develop trade agreements and create new visions, but to employ them in building a new economic reality for Lebanon on the economic map of the Mediterranean."
For its part, "ESCWA" indicated in a statement that "over the past two decades, the cumulative deficit in the Lebanese trade balance amounted to more than 250 billion US dollars, and in the same context, Lebanon recorded a low performance in terms of the trade returns of the two free trade agreements it concluded with European Union and with the Arab countries.”