The president of the Council of Ministers Saad Hariri chaired today a cabinet session at the Grand Serail. When the meeting ended, the Minister of Information Jamal Jarrah said: As you know, the Economic and financial reform committee held several meetings and there was a positive progress in the subject of reforms. We received papers from all parties and political forces, but we feel some reluctance to approve some items, even those submitted by these same forces in their papers.

At the beginning of the session, there was progress on the issue of reforms and the items that should be included in the budget. Then we observed some delay in topics that were supposed to have been resolved in previous sessions.

This will not lead to a result, will reflect negatively on our performance as a cabinet and delay the approval of the budget, and this is not required.

We all know that we are in a very difficult economic, financial and monetary situation, and more work and responsibility are required in approaching things. Today, political forces must assume their responsibilities, move forward with all seriousness and respect what was included in their papers. If each political team retracts from what was presented and discusses again items that we had agreed upon in principle and approved Today’s meeting was supposed to be the final one, especially for the articles that must be contained in the budget. In any case, we did not reach a difficult point and the reforms committee will hold a meeting at 5:30 pm next Wednesday. We do not want to waste more time and there are constitutional deadlines. By October 15 or at the latest October 22, we must complete the budget and send it to parliament, according to the constitution.

Question: Who is hindering the achievement of the budget? The citizen has the right to know

Jarrah: I will not give names. The citizen has the right to know, and in previous meetings, I used to reflect a very positive atmosphere and say that we are advancing, but there are some forces that retreat from what is agreed upon. If the situation continues, I will say things as they are.

Everyone knows that the economic, financial and monetary situation is difficult, and people expect us officials and political forces to achieve and send the budget to parliament because the mere transfer of the budget to parliament gives a positive impression and stabilizes economic matters. Unfortunately, we were supposed to accomplish today more than we did and we should have committed to what we had previously said in the working papers of what had been agreed in previous sessions. But today things have not been at the required level.

Question: Why doesn’t the government resign as long as there is a big rift in the political vision?

Jarrah: We have to separate politics from the economy. In politics, Prime Minister Hariri said yesterday that we are committed to the Arab consensus in the Arab League and to the Foreign Ministry’s statement on the Turkish-Syrian issue only. The government is not responsible of the rest of the statement. Of course, any head of party or movement has the right to express his political position, but this position is not binding for the Lebanese government.

The government’s official spokesperson is Prime Minister Hariri, and anything related to this matter is decided in the cabinet. What is not decided in the cabinet does not reflect the government’s position. What happened yesterday and what happened today is an expression of political views that are non-binding for the Council of Ministers, which is committed to the ministerial statement and to what Prime Minister Hariri is saying as prime minister and spokesperson.

Question: Does the political obstruction affect the budget?

Jarrah: The political issue is over, and work on the budget issue has resumed.

Question: People have the right to know who is blocking the budget, especially since there are crises in fuel, flour and others?

Jarrah: Prime Minister Hariri intervened on the issue of fuel and summoned the importers of fuel and the issue was resolved in half an hour, as was the issue of wheat. I am talking about a specific issue. We were advancing on the budget and its items. What happened should not have happened. We hope to advance during the meeting of the reform committee on Wednesday.

Source: National News Agency

syrianewsgazette.comGovernment
The president of the Council of Ministers Saad Hariri chaired today a cabinet session at the Grand Serail. When the meeting ended, the Minister of Information Jamal Jarrah said: As you know, the Economic and financial reform committee held several meetings and there was a positive progress in the...