Beirut International Airport, Wednesday, July 11, 2018. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri is racing against the clock as he intensified consultations to form a Cabinet that is expected to tackle a wide range of issues – perhaps most importantly stimulating the stagnated economy and implementing overdue reforms.Economists and business leaders, who are closely monitoring the situation, warn that further delay in forming the Cabinet could complicate the implementation of reforms and hence deprive Lebanon from receiving the soft loans and grants from the CEDRE conference that are essential to rebuild infrastructure and turn the economy around.Choucair and a number of businesspeople and merchants met with President Michel Aoun, Hariri and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri to underline the importance of a quick formation of the Cabinet to implement economic reforms.Marwan Barakat, head of the economic research at Bank Audi, stressed that there is still time to form a Cabinet.Bank Audi has 11 economic indicators that it monitors.Barakat projected gross domestic product growth in Lebanon at 2 percent, identical to the projection of Central Bank Gov. Riad Salameh.
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