Byblos Bank’s Nassib Ghobril is Best Economist for 2009,selected by World Lebanese League

World Lebanese League: Byblos Bank’s Nassib Ghobril is Best Economist for 2009

The World Lebanese League announced that it has awarded Mr. Nassib Ghobril, Chief Economist and Head of Economic Research & Analysis at the Byblos Bank Group, its annual prize for “Best Economist in Lebanon and the Diaspora for 2009.” The World Lebanese League selected Mr. Ghobril for this award at the annual meeting of its International Council that was held recently in the Caribbean country of Belize. The League promotes the interests of the Lebanese Diaspora around the world and aims to maintain links between emigrants of Lebanese origin and Lebanon.

H.E. former Ambassador Sarkis Abou Nohra, President of the League’s International Council, declared that Mr. Ghobril was selected for this award “due to the credibility and importance of his economic analysis, opinions and viewpoints that are closely followed in Lebanon and among the Lebanese Diaspora, and that help members of the Diaspora take financial and investment decisions related to Lebanon, as well as help shape the outlook of foreign investors towards the Lebanese economy.” He added that “Mr. Ghobril is considered in Lebanon and among the Diaspora to be one of the key opinion makers about economic and financial issues in Lebanon.”

The League’s Secretary General, Mr. Nabil Harfouche, added that “the economic and financial publications issued by Mr. Ghobril have become a reference among the Lebanese Diaspora due to their credibility and objectivity, and help members of the Diaspora across the world stay informed and follow developments in the Lebanese economy and its financial sector in a comprehensive way.” He further stated that the award is given to individuals “for their national service, civic and cultural accomplishments, and their outstanding support of the Lebanese Diaspora.” A formal ceremony will be held in Beirut in October to officially hand the award to Mr. Ghobril.

Ambassador Nohra further stated that “Mr. Ghobril was the first to highlight the importance of expatriates’ remittances when he produced and published the first objective analysis based on figures and numbers about the impact of expatriates’ remittances on the Lebanese economy back in 2003, at a time when the subject of remittances was still an emerging topic at multilateral institutions. He added that he has since become a reference on the subject. He note that, “more recently, Mr. Ghobril was among the very few Lebanese economists to warn in September 2008 about the magnitude of the global financial crisis and its potential direct and indirect implications for the Lebanese economy and banking sector, at a time when many observers were minimizing or denying any possible impact on Lebanon.”

Dr. François Bassil, Chairman & General Manager of the Byblos Bank Group added that “Mr. Ghobril joined Byblos Bank in March 2006 to establish an economic research department that would serve the full spectrum of internal and external research needs of the Group. He added that “within a short period of time, the internal reports and analysis he has provided have become a key tool to support decision-making by the Group’s management. For example, his methodical assessment of the potential impact of the global financial crisis on various aspects of the Lebanese economy and key sectors has helped Byblos Bank better prepare to face the ramifications of the crisis.”

Dr. Nabih Chartouni, Chairman of the World Lebanese League’s Economic Committee, highlighted that “regional and international media outlets have sought, and continue to seek, Mr. Ghobril for objective and informed opinions on various aspects of the Lebanese economy, while his department has become a must-stop for foreign analysts, economists and researchers from multilateral and governmental organizations as well as private sector institutions seeking an objective update on the local economy.”

The World Lebanese League is a civil, independent, non-governmental, non-religious and non-profit organization that promotes the interests of the Lebanese Diaspora around the world and aims to maintain links between emigrants of Lebanese origin and their homeland Lebanon. The League is present in North, Central and South America, as well as in Europe, Australia and Africa, and its General Secretariat is based in Lebanon. The League’s Charter states that its objectives include informing Lebanese descendents and their relatives about Lebanon and the Lebanese heritage, while encouraging them to support Lebanon locally, regionally and internationally in all economic, social, humanitarian and cultural spheres. It also works at encouraging activities that benefit both Lebanon and Lebanese emigrants’ host countries.

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