Lebanese politicians plan to form a government before the Arab Economic and Social Development Summit in Beirut on January 16-18.
Lebanese prime minister Saad Hariri after meeting President Michel Aoun told reporters on Tuesday, “We have fallen behind — we must form the government. The president and I are determined to meet again and finish this issue, because the country cannot continue without a government.” Hariri warned that the country is in dire need to form a government as it is battling with economic crisis and regional instability.
Lebanon has not been able to form a new government since elections in May because of political wrangling. Lebanese political parties have been vying over the allocation of different cabinet positions, making the country’s economy more fragile.
Lebanon has the third highest debt-to-GDP ratio in the world. It’s finance minister Ali Hassan Khalil claimed that the nation is fronting terrible economic crisis. Hariri called for all the contending political parties to cooperate in revamping country’s the political process.
The Shi’ite group, Hezbollah, which is backed by Iranian forces showed a positive response towards the idea of forming a new government. Mahmoud Qamati, deputy head of the political council of Hezbollah said, that the solution to break political impasse “is very near and is part of Eid al-Adha.” Hezbollah is a militant group, founded in the 1980s, to fight against Israeli forces and became a political party in 1990s.
In April at a conference in Paris, to help the nation with its economic crisis, the international community assured the nation loan worth $11.5 billion (10 billion euros). The funding is mainly to help the country with its infrastructure projects, which cannot be executed without a new cabinet.
International Monetary Fund (IMF) has asked the nation to put its debt on a sustainable path. Hariri pledges to implement economic reforms in order to put the economy on the path of growth. He plans to focus on international investments in certain sectors like electricity, transport and digital communications, etc.