Business articles

Olympian spending

Olympian spending

Three years ago, when it semed the world was his for the taking, businessman tycoon Taha Koleilat bought a second-division Lebanese football team, pumped several million dollars into it, bought top Lebanese players, and set his sights on the number-one berth in the First Division. Today, even though his business interests are under intense legal

Running on empty

The Beirut International Marathon (BIM) has already put Lebanon on official marathon calendars, with over 3,500 runners registered. However, so far the event looks like a personal project. Envisioned by May El-Khalil, who describes herself as

Talking in public

The ministry of telecommunications and its network-operating subsidiary, Ogero, have installed the first wave of public payphones in Lebanon, with apparent success. The rollout began in late 2003 with payphones at Beirut airport and in the capital. According to ministry figures, installation shall continue until 4,000 public phones are available nationwide. The total project cost

A reason to wine

The Union Vinicole du Liban (UVL) and the Association of Lebanese Industrialists (ALI) are exploring the possibility of setting up what is tentatively being referred to as a marketing board to promote Lebanon

A seasonal ‘flop’?

Despite the usual upbeat suggestions that tourism is on the up and up in Lebanon, the Arab World Trade and Tourism Exchange (AWTTE), held at the BIEL exhibition center from 16 to 19 September, was, in the words of one hotel marketing director who participated,

FYI Briefs – October

Welcome backSince September 1, the Lebanese authorities have again been allowing South Koreans to obtain visas upon arrival in Lebanon. The practice had been discontinued in November 2003, when the Lebanese government imposed visa restrictions on a number of countries. South Korean embassy officials declined to offer an explanation for their country

Without credit

The use of electronic payment cards in Lebanon and the region has grown rapidly in the past four years, according to statistics by Visa Card International. But with few exceptions, Middle Eastern markets remain debit card markets. Data provided by Visa International for the region in the period from March 1999 until March 2003 show

Licensed to sing

After having shown his face all over town to promote his first CD, fashion designer turned singer Elie Karam now has exposure he never dreamt of, putting him beyond the reach of less obscure local artists. For around three months, people all over the world have been able to listen to Karam

FYI Briefs – August

Paying the hospitals After much back-and-forth in the media, in mid-July an agreement was finally hammered out between the Syndicate of Hospitals and the various government entities and public employee groups that collectively owe almost LL500 billion in unpaid hospital bills. The terms of the deal stipulate that the hospitals

Driving costs

Driving your car in Lebanon has never been so expensive. Neither has the government swallowed a more substantive share of the transportation budget from private households. Since the introduction of value-added tax in February 2002, the government’s revenue participation has reached and exceeded 50% on the amount a consumer spends on the purchase of a