Mohammad Safadi

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Mohammad Ahmed Safadi
Minister of Finance
In office
13 June 2011 – February 2014
Prime MinisterNajib Mikati
Preceded byRaya Haffar Al Hassan
Succeeded byAli Hassan Khalil
Minister of Economy and Trade
In office
22 July 2008 – 13 June 2011
Preceded bySami Haddad
Succeeded byNicholas Nahas
Personal details
Born (1944-03-28) 28 March 1944 (age 75)
Tripoli, Lebanon
NationalityLebanese
Political partyTripoli Bloc
Children2
Alma materAmerican University of Beirut
Websitehttp://www.mohammad-safadi.com/

Mohammad Ahmed Safadi (Arabic: محمد أحمد الصفدي‎; born 28 March 1944) is a Lebanese businessman that served as minister of finance under Najib Mikati.

Early life and education[edit]

Safadi was born in Tripoli, Lebanon, on 28 March 1944 to Sunni family.[1][2] His family are businesspeople, running their own firm in Tripoli.[3]

He is a graduate of the American University of Beirut where he received a bachelor's degree in business administration in February 1968.[2][4]

Business career[edit]

Safadi began his career in the private sector in Lebanon in 1969.[5] In 1975 when the civil war broke out in Lebanon, he began to invest in Saudi Arabia.[3][6] Therefore, he has many business investments in Saudi Arabia.[7]

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.[3] Safadi established Safadi Group Holding in Lebanon in the 1990s.[8][9]

Political career[edit]

Safadi has been a member of the Lebanese parliament since 2000 as part of the Tripoli bloc.[8][10] He served as the minister of public works and transport from 19 July 2005 to July 2008.[1][10] Safadi also served as acting energy and water minister in 2007 and in 2008.[11][12] Next, he was appointed minister of economy and trade on 11 July 2008 to the cabinet headed by Fouad Siniora.[1][5] He was reelected member of parliament in the 2009 elections and he was on the list of the March 14 alliance.[13][14] Safadi was appointed minister of economy and trade to the cabinet of Saad Hariri on 9 November 2009,[15] and his tenure lasted until June 2011.[10]

Safadi did not support for Saad Hariri in the 2011 cabinet formation talks with Lebanese President Michel Suleiman.[7] Instead, he voted for Najib Mikati during cabinet formation consultations in January 2011.[16] Therefore, he broke with his March 14 allies and sided with the Hezbollah-led March 8 coalition along with Mikati.[17] Safadi became an ally of Mikati after this event.[18]

Safadi served as the minister of finance from 13 June 2011 to February 2014 in the cabinet led by Prime Minister Mikati.[6][19][20] Within the cabinet, Safadi is part of the group appointed by the Prime Minister[8] and an independent or non-affiliated minister in the Mikati's cabinet.[21] In October 2012, As Safir reported that Safadi would not participate in the 2013 parliamentary elections in Tripoli possibly due to health concerns.[22]

Safadi chairs the steering committee of the Middle East Regional Technical Assistance Committee (METAC) of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).[23] He is also the head of the Lebanese-German Parliamentary Friendship Committee and a member of the Economy Commission in the parliament.[24]

Safadi's term as finance minister ended in February 2014 when Ali Hassan Khalil was appointed to the post.[25]

In November 2019, amidst the 2019 Lebanese protests, Safadi was tapped as the next Prime Minister of Lebanon, to succeed Saad Hariri.[26] Safadi withdrew his candidacy on November 16, stating that it would have been difficult to form a harmonious cabinet.[27]

Controversy[edit]

The Guardian reported that Safadi involved in Al Yamama arms deal through an anonymous offshore company, Poseidon.[28] 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.[28][29]

Personal life[edit]

On 5 October 2015, Safadi married Violette Khaïrallah. Previously, he was married 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 "MP Mohammad Safadi". NOW Lebanon. 2 October 2012. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Mohammad A. Safadi". Safadi Foundation. Archived from the original on 9 September 2012. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  3. ^ a b c David Leigh; Rob Evans (7 June 2007). "Biography. M. Safadi". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 August 2013.
  4. ^ "Former Ministers". Ministry of Economy and Trade. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  5. ^ a b "Meet the government". Now Lebanon. 11 July 2008. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  6. ^ a b "Mohammad Safadi". Beirut. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  7. ^ a b Moubayed, Sami (29 January 2011). "Hariri backed wrong horse". Asia Times Online. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
  8. ^ a b c "Lebanon announces cabinet line-up". NOW Lebanon. 13 June 2011. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  9. ^ "Profiles: Lebanon's new government". Lebanonwire. 12 July 2008. Archived from the original on 11 May 2013. Retrieved 4 April 2013.
  10. ^ a b c "Mohammad A. Safadi". Ministry of Finance. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  11. ^ 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.
  12. ^ "Speakers from the Government of Lebanon". The Economist. 15 June 2010. Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2013.
  13. ^ "Lebanon: Wikileaks cables expose Hezbollah, Syria allies". Ya Libnan. 3 May 2011. Retrieved 24 October 2012.
  14. ^ "New parliament composition" (PDF). Lebanese Information Center. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  15. ^ Ladki, Nadim (9 November 2009). "Lebanon's Hariri forms unity government with Hezbollah". Reuters. Beirut. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  16. ^ Moubayed, Sami (15 February 2011). "Why Hariri no longer matters". Asia Times Online. Damascus. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  17. ^ Amrieh, Antoine (29 January 2011). "PM-designate camp to counter pro-Hariri rally with 'day of joy'". The Daily Star. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  18. ^ Salem, Paul (15 June 2011). "Lebanon's New Government: Outlines and Challenges". Carnegie Middle East. Retrieved 21 April 2013.
  19. ^ El Basha, Thomas (13 June 2011). "Mikati forms 30-member Lebanon Cabinet". The Daily Star. Beirut. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  20. ^ "The Cabinet". Embassy of Lebanon Washington DC. Archived from the original on 14 April 2013. Retrieved 24 October 2012.
  21. ^ "The New Lebanese Government" (Assessment Report). Lebanese Information Center. July 2011. Retrieved 13 October 2012.
  22. ^ "Safadi not to run in 2013 parliamentary elections, report says". NOW Lebanon. 4 April 2012. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  23. ^ "Steering Committee". Middle East Regional Technical Assistance Center. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  24. ^ "Equitable Growth". The Business Year. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 22 February 2013.
  25. ^ "Lebanon announces new government after ten month political deadlock". Euronews. 15 February 2014. Retrieved 16 February 2014.
  26. ^ "Lebanon's Safadi agrees to be next PM amid economic crisis: Bassil". Reuters. Retrieved 15 November 2019.
  27. ^ "Lebanon's Safadi withdraws candidacy to be next prime minister". France24. Retrieved 16 November 2019.
  28. ^ a b "BAE files". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  29. ^ Lebanese billionaire is drawn into BAE arms deal inquiry as 'second middleman for Saudis', 2 Dec 2006, The Guardian
Political offices
Preceded by
Raya Haffar Al Hassan
Minister of Finance
2011 – 2014
Succeeded by
Ali Hassan Khalil