From:Mira Yardemian
Public Relations Director
Haigazian University
Rue Mexique - Kantari
P.O. Box 11-1748
Riad El-Solh 1107 2090
Beirut - Lebanon

3rd Annual International Business Conference
"Current Issues in Business and Information Technology"

On May 10, 2006, for the 3rd consecutive year, the Business Conference, on
"Current Issues in Business and Information Technology," took place with
great success.

The conference, organized by the department of Business Administration and
Economics, in cooperation with the department of Mathematical Sciences,
with 11 participants from different universities, dealt with important
business issues in finance, trade, exchange rates, optimization of
production, career development, franchise contracts, and information

The organizers of the conference had assembled an impressive program of
research papers which fostered a lively dialogue among academicians, public
sector officials, and business and information technology professionals.

At the opening session, the Dean of Business Administration and Economics
Dr. Fadi Asrawi welcomed the audience, and tackled the issue of
transformation and competition.
"Nowadays transformation is taking place in the relationship between
universities and business, as universities rise to the challenge of the
knowledge-driven economy. Lebanon is far from competing with its
surroundings in terms of capital, technology or low cost production. As a
result; we must seek a competitive advantage by exploiting capabilities
which cannot easily match. These distinctive capabilities must be
knowledge, skills, creativity and leadership," Asrawi said.

In his turn, the president of the university Rev. Dr. Paul Haidostian
explained his understanding of conferences.
"Academic conferences are, among other things, conversations during which
resourceful parties not only share knowledge and expertise with others but
also open themselves up to their partners. Conferences are also occasions
for beneficial change. And finally conferences are a challenge to the
people in academia to study further, research, and produce, " Haidostian noted.

The first keynote speaker, the vice-governor of the Central Bank of
Lebanon, Mr. Alain Balian discussed the need of Lebanon for a new vision in
politics and economics, in order to foster economic growth and higher
living conditions.
Balian explained that investment in the country constitutes the main
generator of production and growth.
"Transparency in Public Service, in addition to Meritocracy in public
officials appointments, are the basis of improvement in public service
delivery and attracting investors," Balian explained.
Balian concluded his speech by emphasizing on the opportunity that Lebanon
should grasp, given the unprecedented international economic supported
granted to it.

The 2nd keynote speaker, the director general of the Ministry of Finance,
Mr. Alain Biffany had for subject the Monetary Policy of Lebanon: Problems
and Recommendations.
Biffany considered that the main obstacle to economic advancement is the
absence of accountability towards politicians and public sector officials.
He elaborated that the role of governments, historically, were to
distribute rights equally
among citizens, except that in Lebanon, the role of government after the
war was in a way fostering the concentration of rights among the ruling
class, which resulted in political and economic tensions among citizens,
thus forcing them to emigrate.
"Reform should be organic and general covering all sectors of the public
service. It needs a strong political will and determination, coupled with
tremendous public support and accountability," Biffany concluded.