BEIRUT: Olive farmers urged the government over the weekend to settle dues on oil purchased for the Lebanese Army in early 2012.
“We will take escalatory steps in major olive producing regions, [if the government fails to reimburse the funds to farmers],” a statement by George Aynati, head of the Koura olive farmers association said.
The farmers reiterated their demands to prohibit olive oil imports and award subsidies to farmers. Around 50,000 20-liter canisters of olive oil were sourced by the government for the Lebanese Army in late 2011.
In mid-2012, Agriculture Minister Hussein Hajj Hasan asked the Cabinet to purchase 100,000 olive oil canisters as local produce increased to 2 million canisters.
However, the Cabinet has not made a final decision on the issue.