Now 73, he is the former deputy prime minister of Lebanon, as well as a multibillionaire entrepreneur.
In 1954, at the age of seventeen, Fares left his homeland and found a job as a clerk at a catering and food services firm in Qatar. Two years later, he was heading Abela Group’s finances and subsequently managing its operations in Pakistan, Kuwait, Iran and Saudi Arabia.
At age 38, Fares went into business for himself and established a civil engineering and construction firm, which completed many notable projects including the world's longest international bridge, which connects Bahrain to Saudi Arabia.
In the general elections of 2000, Fares won the seat of Akkar, the first district of the North Lebanon. He served as deputy prime minister of Lebanon from 2000 to 2005. Prior to that his career spans four decades in the Persian Gulf, specifically Saudi Arabia, where he began with Abela Catering and then Ballast Needam. By the early 1970s Issam Fares was playing a key role in the infrastructure buildout of Saudi Arabia, including roads and housing.
The Fares Lecture Series, The Fares Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies, both at Tufts University, and the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University of Beirut (AUB) are named after him. He operates the Houston, Texas based WEDGE Group.
Fares is married to Hala Fares.
- "Rich List-Issam Fares", Arabian Business - Rich List, 10 December 2008. Accessed 22 March 2016.
- "Arabian Business Rich List 2010". Arabian Business. Retrieved 2015-11-27.
- "Opposition Candidates Win Elections". APS Diplomat Recorder. 9 September 2000. Retrieved 10 March 2013.
- "Arabian Business Rich List 2010". Arabian Business. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
- "Top 200 largest yachts". Boat International. Retrieved 2015-11-27.
- "Superyacht Wedge Too", Super Yacht Fan. Accessed 5 April 2016.
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