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9 March 2016

THE OIL FOR DEVELOPMENT (OfD) PROGRAMME SECOND ANNUAL MEETING
In January 2015 Lebanon has entered into a three-year agreement with Norway’s Oil for Development (OfD) Programme. On the 9th of March 2016 the second OfD annual meeting took place in Beirut and brought together Norwegian and Lebanese counterparts who are actively involved in the programme. The purpose of the second OfD annual meeting was to discuss, assess and overview the progress made during the first year, and to approve the work plan and the budget for the second year.

The LPA’s Chairman Mr. Wissam Zahabi opened the session and emphasized on the importance that the collaboration with relevant Norwegian institutions brings; namely building the Lebanese institutions’ capacity and assisting in the development of the nascent oil and gas sector.

H.E. Ambassador of Norway Lene Lind went through the major achievements of the institutional partnership with Lebanon, and stressed that trust is a primordial base for success. H.E the Lebanese Minster of Energy and Water Arthur Nazarian reiterated the importance of launching the first licensing round as the delay resulting from the political deadlock bears major costs on the Lebanese economy and society. Nazarian echoed the importance of the OfD Programme, which besides the technical support it provides, also strengthens relations between Norway and Lebanon. Other relevant institutions enthusiastically participated in the second OfD annual meeting including representatives from Lebanese ministries involved in the OfD Programme such as the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Environment, along with relevant partnering Norwegian institutions namely the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD), the Ministry of Oil and Energy, the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), the Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA), the Norwegian Environmental Agency (NEA), the Norwegian Coastal Administration (NCA), and the Oil Taxation Office (OTO).

Finally, the Norwegian institutions expressed their satisfaction working with competent Lebanese counterparts; while the Lebanese institutions expressed their appreciation from the Norwegian support, which significantly helps in transferring knowledge, improving local capacities and building strong institutions.

















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