Lebanon’s Cabinet approved a draft 2010 budget, the first budget to be endorsed in five years by a government, in a country marred by political differences that have obstructed policy-making decisions.
Five years after the murder of former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri , his son’s government of national unity has sought to stabilize a country torn for decades by sectarian war. The search for Hariri’s killers puts that goal at risk.
EFG-Hermes Holding SAE , the biggest publicly traded Arab investment bank, agreed to acquire a 65 percent stake in Beirut-based Credit Libanais SAL for $542 million to expand in consumer and commercial banking.
Lebanon will delay an initial public offering of shares in national carrier Middle East Airlines that was due by the end of this year because of unfavorable market conditions, Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh said.
Syria, seeking financing for development projects as oil revenue declines, will have “no problem” finding buyers in its first sale of treasury bills and bonds on Dec. 13, Central Bank Governor Adib Mayaleh said.
Lebanon may sell new Eurobonds this year and roll over existing debt to help finance a proposed jump in fiscal spending that would push the budget deficit to a record, said Finance Minister Raya Haffar el-Hassan.