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Some industries leaning towards dismissing 30,000 of the work forces


The member of the board of directors of the Industrialists Association and president of the “ Industrial Committee of the Regions in the Association” in North Lebanon, Mr. Michel Daher, noted in an interview with As Safir  newspaper that a number of industrial outfits that have been negatively affected by the events in Syria are moving towards dismissing around 30000 jobs or around 21.5% of their work forces which totals 140,000 jobs.  Daher warned of a danger that goes beyond the laying off of current workers and reiterated that the industrial sector is facing major challenges with a freeze on growth and a halt in financial investments in machineries.  This according to Daher will lead to the halting of the industrial development wheel, will also affect production quality, and will raise the level of unemployment rate thus worsening the overall economic conditions in the country.
According to the same article, Syria was actually the recipient of 97% of Lebanon’s industrial exports based on the statistics of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture in Zahleh and the Bekaa.  The crisis situation is now further exacerbated by the halt of land transport as a result of the events in Syria.
For his part, the Ministry of Industry, Freij Sabounjian noted that the decline in export or what is referred to as the closure of certain industries is actually due to the rigidity of some of the industrialists who are not able to adapt and shift demands to other Arab and international markets, while not dismissing the impact of the Syrian crisis. However, he pointed out that many factories and products have actually greatly benefited from the disappearance of Syrian competition thus prompting many industries to step up their production and sales especially within the food industry sector.
Source: Assafir 26 August, 2013

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