Lebanon supports Moscow as a hopeful venue of Expo-2010

Lebanese business circles have backed the idea to hold the World Universal Exposition Expo-2010 in Moscow. While talking to the Russian Delegation, which is headed by Russia's deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade Yury Zhdanov, the Federation of Lebanese Chambers of Agriculture, Industry and Trade /FLCAIT/ and the Lebanese ministry of economy and trade both approved the idea of nominating Russia to host the World Exposition.

FLCAIT President Adnan Kassar assured the Russian delegation that an upcoming special session of the Cabinet of Ministers and business circles, which is expected to decide on Lebanon's position on the issue, Federation members will lend their wholehearted support to Russia. Lebanese Minister of Economy and Trade Basil Flayhan, too, stood up to support Moscow.

Talks between the sides focused of all-round economic cooperation between Russia and Lebanon and on ways of expanding it. "Lebanese economy is eager to see Russian business circles participating in various projects," said Kassar. "We have special privileges for those who want to cooperate with us." According to Zhdanov, Russia is striving to strengthen and expand all-round cooperation with Lebanon, a country that "occupies a special place in the Arab world, a country that has a substantial economic potential and is known to have solid business links with many states." During an earlier meeting with the Russian delegation, Lebanon's Premier Rafiq Hariri and Foreign Minister Mahmud Hammud, too, had supported Russia as a candidate for hosting EXPO-2010 in Moscow.

Lebanese President Emil Lahud, who read through RIA Novosti's materials about Russia's preparations for the World Exposition along with the rest, said holding EXPO-2010 in Moscow was a good idea.

The Russian delegation has handed over to the Lebanese premier a message from his Russian counterpart Mikhail Kasyanov with a request to support Russia, who sent an official application to be allowed to host the World Universal Exposition. As a member of the International Bureau of Exhibitions, Lebanon will cast a vote in Paris in December for one of the five candidates for hosting the exposition, namely China, South Korea, Poland, Mexico, and Russia.

Talks with the Lebanese side involved Moscow government spokesman Nikolai Kulikov, Russia's Ambassador at large Igor Semyonov, Chairman of the Board of RIA Novosti news agency Alexei Zhidakov, and the head of the Administrative Department of the Russian ministry of economic development and trade Stanislav Kuznetsov.

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