Members of the Lebanon Parliament watch as Lebanon's Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri talks on a screen, after Hariri's new government won a vote of confidence in parliament in downtown Beirut, Lebanon December 28, 2016. REUTERS/Jamal Saidi
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Prime Minister Saad Hariri said Friday his Cabinet would hold its first regular session next week as analysts predicted it would deliver on its vows to agree on a new vote law and pass the 2017 draft state budget."In Lebanon's history, a national unity government is tantamount to a limited stock company or the sharing of spoils," said Nader, also the director of the Levant Institute for Strategic Affairs, a Beirut-based think tank.He added that talks were now focused on reconciling two different hybrid electoral laws to replace the controversial 1960 majoritarian system which was used in the last parliamentary elections in 2009 .Nader said the government would face difficulties in passing the 2017 draft state budget because of lingering differences over the public sector's wage hike bill and demands by some parliamentary blocs, mainly Aoun's Change and Reform bloc, for a breakdown of $11 billion in extra-budgetary spending by previous governments in the past few years.Imad Salamey, political science professor at the Lebanese American University, sounded optimistic that the government would be able to pass a state budget and endorse a new electoral law.
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