Riyadh- Saudi-Lebanese discussions will mainly tackle ten topics including: Saudi deposits, double taxation rules and facilitation of transfers between the two countries, sources told Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.
Other topics to be discussed also include: mechanisms of joint cooperation in the health sector, openness of Lebanese government towards the Gulf, stalled aid and ways to activate investments between Saudi Arabia and Lebanon.
From its part, the Lebanese Business Council in Saudi Arabia pinned hopes on the visit of President Michel Aoun to Saudi Arabia to open a new page of economic cooperation between Riyadh and Beirut.
The council also expected Lebanon to receive 200,000 Saudi tourists in 2017 along with an increase in joint investments and trade exchange.
Rabih Al Amin, secretary of the Lebanese Business Council in Saudi Arabia, said: “Saudi-Lebanese relations underwent a crisis that emerged from the current turmoil in the region and the inactivity of constitutional institutions.” He went on: “The kingdom is still keen on ensuring the normal functioning of institutions in Lebanon.”
In his remarks to Ashraq Al-Awsat, Amin considered the visit an expression of gratitude to Riyadh that always stands beside the Lebanese government and people. He said Aoun’s choice of visiting Saudi Arabia as the first country following his election last year, the accompanying delegation and the duration of the visit are all indicators that relations with Saudi Arabia are taken seriously.
“I hope this visit comes out with a new approach, which reinforces relations, and a new vision similar to Saudi Vision 2030. We also hope that new communication mechanisms be activated between the Saudi business society and its Lebanese counterpart,” Amin added.
When asked about the importance of this visit and its impact on relations, he said that it has a special significance.