Cabinet ‘Open’ to ‘Turning East’ Economically, Won’t Renew Sonatrach Contract


The government on Thursday expressed openness to economic cooperation with “Eastern countries” such as China, Iran and Russia, in the wake of calls in this direction from Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.

“There was unanimity on being open towards everyone in a manner that achieves the country’s interest,” Information Minister Manal Abdul Samad said after a Cabinet session, responding to a reporter’s question about the matter.

Energy Minister Raymond Ghajar meanwhile said that Cabinet decided not to renew the contract with Algerian oil company Sonatrach following the latest controversy over a ship carrying counterfeit fuel to Lebanon’s power plants.

“The book of terms has become almost ready and we are discussing it with the procurement authority,” Ghajar added.

Cabinet meanwhile approved a proposal from the Education Ministry to reopen universities and technical institutions to complete the academic year and conduct exams in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown, while observing “all the health and precautionary measures.”



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