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Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Lebanon, France Plan to Rebuild Beirut Port


Thu 14 Mar 2024 | 09:47 AM
Israa Farhan

Lebanese and French officials have put forward a plan to reconstruct and reorganize Beirut Port, more than three years following the devastating explosion there.

The French government has enhanced a proposal initially presented by French engineering firms Artelia and Egis, focusing on restoring the port's damaged docks due to the blast and redesigning the port to facilitate coastal traffic and transition to solar energy.

Expertise France conducted an assessment of the proposed security developments at the port, with Lebanon needing an estimated $60 to $80 million to complete the reconstruction.

Beirut Port's General Director, Omar Itani, stated that Lebanon plans to use the port's revenues, which have seen an increase post the COVID-19 pandemic and amidst Lebanon's unprecedented economic crisis, aiming for $150 million in 2023.

The meeting was attended by Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati, French Ambassador to Lebanon Herve Magro, and representatives from the French companies.

Mikati emphasized the significance of France's support for Lebanon in this context, considering it of special importance as it represents the heart of the international community.

Magro affirmed that the reconstruction of Beirut Port is one of France's priorities in supporting Lebanon, adding that the Lebanese economy indeed requires a rebuilt, modern, and safe Beirut Port.

However, the plan presented does not address the fate of the port's large grain silos, which absorbed much of the explosion's impact, effectively shielding the western part of Beirut from the blast.

The explosion in August 2020 in Beirut was one of the largest non-nuclear explosions ever recorded, claiming over 200 lives, injuring more than 7,000, causing widespread destruction to the port and several city districts, with material losses exceeding $15 billion.