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Vice President of the World Bank: We are committed to paying the social safety net loan in Lebanon

The World Bank Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa, Dr. Farid Belhaj, confirmed that the World Bank is committed to paying the $265 million loan allocated to the social safety net, with the possibility of adding $300 million to support marginalized groups, stressing that the Bank will remain by Lebanon's side and will not leave it. .

This came during a reception by Lebanese President Michel Aoun to the Vice President of the World Bank for the Middle East and North Africa at Baabda Palace.

The President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, stressed that the first tasks that the new government will undertake upon its formation is to follow up on the reforms that have begun to be implemented, foremost of which is the completion of the criminal financial review, considering that Lebanon will not recover from its current crisis without achieving reforms.

The President of the Republic touched on the possibility of restructuring the loans granted by the World Bank to Lebanon that have not yet been used, according to emergency priorities, reviewing the difficult conditions that Lebanon has experienced and is still going through, as a result of the accumulation of crises over the past years, in addition to the spread of the Corona pandemic and the explosion that occurred in the port Beirut, the increase in the number of displaced people, and the closure of border crossings that constitute the economic artery of foreign trade, pointing to the financial deficit that Lebanon has fallen into and its impact on national income, balance of payments and monetary stability.

During the meeting, they discussed the report prepared by the World Bank recently, in which it described the economic and financial crisis that hit Lebanon among the ten crises and perhaps among the three most severe crises globally since the mid-nineteenth century, where the President of the Republic indicated that the report was referred to the relevant authorities. and concerned bodies to study it and make comments.

The President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, discussed with Dr. Belhaj and his accompanying delegation the existing cooperation between Lebanon and the World Bank and the projects that are being funded, as well as touching on non-governmental associations and civil society organizations and the role of official Lebanese institutions in following up on the work of these associations.

Aoun stressed the revival of the Bisri Dam financing project, given the cost incurred by the Lebanese state in infrastructure, and given its vital importance to Lebanon in general and to the residents of the capital, Beirut, and the coastal villages in particular.