Byblos Bank Headquarters, Tuesday, 17 June 2014: Byblos Bank held a luncheon at Le Maillon restaurant in Ashrafieh in honor of Dr. Fadi Gemayel, Chairman of the Association of Lebanese Industrialists, and members of the Association. Present were the Minister of Industry Hussein Hajj Hassan, and the Minister of Energy Arthur Nazarian, along with a number of industrialists and managers at the Bank.
- François S. Bassil, Chairman and General Manager of Byblos Bank Group, emphasized the interest of the banking sector in general and Byblos Bank in particular, in supporting industry by providing it with the needed funding under the best terms possible, and by backing up government policies that fall in that direction. Dr. Bassil pointed out the third-of-its-kind agreement Byblos Bank concluded with the European Investment Bank, under which 45 million Euro in credit will be provided to small- and medium-sized enterprises, especially in the industrial sector, at attractive floating or fixed rates and over periods as long as 12 years.
Congratulating the Association for reducing the income tax on industrial exports by 50%, Dr. Bassil wished “that industrial enterprises would maintain and speed up the modernization process through focusing efforts on upgrading their administrative and productive structures, developing their work techniques, and adhering to international standards in production quality and financial transparency.” He hoped the project law on industrial integration, currently the subject of debate within parliamentary committees, will soon be passed, in order to stimulate demands for plants’ integration, and take advantage of subsidized long-term funding allowing the formation of larger industrial enterprises with higher productivity levels and better production quality, and ultimately more strength to compete in foreign markets.
For his part, Dr. Fadi Gemayel, thanked Byblos Bank for giving the industrial sector special importance, and embracing support programs for industrialists. Gemayel called “for synergy between two power centers in Lebanon’s economy: the banking sector and the industry which proved able to withstand and develop against all odds.” He further noted that such synergy should be made through partnership agreements between investment banks and industrial institutions.
Minister Hajj Hassan reiterated his support to all that could boost the Lebanese industry; help it confront local and global challenges; and ensure the interest of consumers and parties of production alike. He added that restructuring the economy should not be made at the expense of the agricultural or industrial sectors, as “no country is viable without agriculture, industry and trade.”