Mohammad Safadi

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Mohammad Ahmed Safadi
Minister of Finance
In office
13 June 2011 – February 2014
Prime Minister Najib Mikati
Preceded by Raya Haffar Al Hassan
Succeeded by Ali Hassan Khalil
Minister of Economy and Trade
In office
22 July 2008 – 13 June 2011
Preceded by Sami Haddad
Succeeded by Nicholas Nahas
Personal details
Born (1944-03-28) 28 March 1944 (age 70)
Tripoli, Lebanon
Nationality Lebanese
Political party (formerly) March 14 alliance[1]
Alma mater American University of Beirut
Religion Islam

Mohammad Ahmed Safadi (born 28 March 1944) is a Lebanese businessman, philanthropist, and politician.[2] He was Lebanon's minister of finance between 2011 and 2014.

Early life and education[edit]

Safadi was born in Tripoli, Lebanon, on 28 March 1944 to Sunni family.[1][3] His family are businesspeople, running their own firm in Tripoli.[4]

He is a graduate of the American University of Beirut where he received a bachelor degree in business administration in February 1968.[3][5]

Business career[edit]

Safadi began his career in the private sector in Lebanon in 1969.[6] In 1975 when the civil war broke out in Lebanon, he began to invest in Saudi Arabia.[4][7] Therefore, he has many business investments in Saudi Arabia.[8]

He expanded his business across the Arab world and into Europe in Saudi Arabia.[1] He also worked as business manager in London for Prince Turki bin Nasser, a member of House of Saud.[4] Safadi established Safadi Group Holding in Lebanon in the 1990s.[9][10]

Political career[edit]

Safadi has been a member of the Lebanese parliament since 2000 as part of the Tripoli bloc.[9][11] He served as the minister of public works and transport from 19 July 2005 to July 2008.[1][11] Safadi also served as acting energy and water minister in 2007 and in 2008.[12][13] Next, he was appointed minister of economy and trade on 11 July 2008 to the cabinet headed by Fouad Siniora.[1][6] He was reelected member of parliament in the 2009 elections and he was on the list of the March 14 alliance.[14][15] Safadi was appointed minister of economy and trade to the cabinet of Saad Hariri on 9 November 2009,[16] and his tenure lasted until June 2011.[11]

Safadi did not support for Saad Hariri in the 2011 cabinet formation talks with Lebanese President Michel Suleiman.[8] Instead, he voted for Najib Mikati during cabinet formation consultations in January 2011.[17] Therefore, he broke with his March 14 allies and sided with the Hezbollah-led March 8 coalition along with Mikati.[18] Safadi became an ally of Mikati after this event.[19]

Safadi served as the minister of finance from 13 June 2011 to February 2014 in the cabinet led by Prime Minister Mikati.[7][20][21] Within the cabinet, Safadi is part of the group appointed by the Prime Minister[9] and an independent or non-affiliated minister in the Mikati's cabinet.[22] In October 2012, As Safir reported that Safadi would not participate in the 2013 parliamentary elections in Tripoli possibly due to health concerns.[23]

Safadi chairs the steering committee of the Middle East Regional Technical Assistance Committee (METAC) of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).[24] He is also the head of the Lebanese-German Parliamentary Friendship Committee and a member of the Economy Commission in the parliament.[25]

Safadi's term as finance minister ended in February 2014 when Ali Hassan Khalil was appointed to the post.[26]

Controversy[edit]

The Guardian reported that Safadi involved in Al Yamama arms deal through an anonymous offshore company, Poseidon.[27] The company was allegedly used to transfer money to Safadi, who was working for Prince Turki bin Nasser, Saudi royal and an air force officer at that time.[27]

Personal life[edit]

Safadi is married to Mona Sidawi and has two children. His son, Ramzi, died in a car crash in England on 10 March 2008.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "MP Mohammad Safadi". NOW Lebanon. 2 October 2012. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  2. ^ "Mohammad A. Safadi". The International Economic Forum of Americas. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "Mohammad A. Safadi". Safadi Foundation. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c David Leigh; Rob Evans (7 June 2007). "Biography. M. Safadi". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 August 2013. 
  5. ^ "Former Ministers". Ministry of Economy and Trade. Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "Meet the government". Now Lebanon. 11 July 2008. Retrieved 21 January 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "Mohammad Safadi". Beirut. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  8. ^ a b Moubayed, Sami (29 January 2011). "Hariri backed wrong horse". Asia Times Online. Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  9. ^ a b c "Lebanon announces cabinet line-up". NOW Lebanon. 13 June 2011. Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  10. ^ "Profiles: Lebanon's new government". Lebanonwire. 12 July 2008. Retrieved 4 April 2013. 
  11. ^ a b c "Mohammad A. Safadi". Ministry of Finance. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  12. ^ Habib, Osama (20 October 2007). "Lebanon to allow price of oil to float if market rises further". The Daily Star (Beirut). Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  13. ^ "Speakers from the Government of Lebanon". The Economist. 15 June 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2013. 
  14. ^ "Lebanon: Wikileaks cables expose Hezbollah, Syria allies". Ya Libnan. 3 May 2011. Retrieved 24 October 2012. 
  15. ^ "New parliament composition". Lebanese Information Center. Retrieved 21 January 2013. 
  16. ^ Ladki, Nadim (9 November 2009). "Lebanon's Hariri forms unity government with Hezbollah". Reuters (Beirut). Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  17. ^ Moubayed, Sami (15 February 2011). "Why Hariri no longer matters". Asia Times Online (Damascus). Retrieved 18 December 2012. 
  18. ^ Amrieh, Antoine (29 January 2011). "PM-designate camp to counter pro-Hariri rally with 'day of joy'". The Daily Star. Retrieved 18 December 2012. 
  19. ^ Salem, Paul (15 June 2011). "Lebanon’s New Government: Outlines and Challenges". Carnegie Middle East. Retrieved 21 April 2013. 
  20. ^ El Basha, Thomas (13 June 2011). "Mikati forms 30-member Lebanon Cabinet". The Daily Star (Beirut). Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  21. ^ "The Cabinet". Embassy of Lebanon Washington DC. Retrieved 24 October 2012. 
  22. ^ "The New Lebanese Government" (Assessment Report). Lebanese Information Center. July 2011. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  23. ^ "Safadi not to run in 2013 parliamentary elections, report says". NOW Lebanon. 4 April 2012. Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  24. ^ "Steering Committee". Middle East Regional Technical Assistance Center. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  25. ^ "Equitable Growth". The Business Year. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  26. ^ "Lebanon announces new government after ten month political deadlock". Euronews. 15 February 2014. Retrieved 16 February 2014. 
  27. ^ a b "BAE files". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Raya Haffar Al Hassan
Minister of Finance
2011 – 2014
Succeeded by
Ali Hassan Khalil