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Cablegate: Lebanon: Application for Opic Finance: Lebanese

VZCZCXRO6726
PP RUEHAG RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHDF RUEHIK RUEHKUK RUEHLZ RUEHROV
DE RUEHLB #1468 2680807
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 250807Z SEP 07
FM AMEMBASSY BEIRUT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9489
INFO RUEHEE/ARAB LEAGUE COLLECTIVE
RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 1617
RHMFISS/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS BEIRUT 001468

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

NSC FOR ABRAMS/SINGH/GAVITO/HARDING/DEMOPULOS, STATE FOR
NEA/ELA, NEA/FO:KHARRINGTON, MPOPAL,

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ENIV LE
SUBJECT: LEBANON: APPLICATION FOR OPIC FINANCE: LEBANESE
AMERICAN UNIVERSITY

REF: STATE 123573

1. (SBU) Post has no objection to the proposed $75 million
guaranty for an investment in the Lebanese American
University (LAU) proposed by the Overseas Private Investment
Corporation (OPIC) in reftel. Post has previously
investigated LAU with regard to OPIC insurance.

2. (U) As per reftel request for demographics for higher
education in Lebanon, enrollment figures for the top eleven
institutions of higher education in Lebanon are as follows:

INSTITUTION 2005-06 2006-07

American University 7,313 7,068
of Beirut (AUB)

Lebanese American 6,303 6,321
University (LAU)

Haigazian 799 742
University (HU)

Lebanese 70,627 71,210
University (LU)

St. Joseph 9,718 11,500
University (USJ)

Notre Dame 4,453 4,867
University (NDU)

University 3,019 3,099
of Balamand (UOB)

Beirut Arab 16,582 16,684
University (BAU)

Sagesse University 2,050 2,500

Islamic University 3,000 3,500
of Lebanon (IUL)

Antonine University 1,120 1,200

LAU enrollment, as provided by the school, was 46 percent
female in 2005-06 and 44 percent female in 2006-07. Total
enrollment in all universities increased by 3 percent in
2006-07.
3. (SBU) Regarding local development and community programs,
LAU has a Center for Research and Development (CDR)
established under a grant from USAID Lebanon in 1998. This
center organizes numerous conferences on subjects such as
public relations, community skills, strategic planning and
management techniques. LAU also conducts studies and
environmental programs on air quality management in urban and
industrial areas. These programs continue to analyze the
statistical validity of existing air pollution database
information to develop optimal long-term air pollution
monitoring programs. LAU carries out health impact analysis,
investigates air quality management alternatives and public
policy choices, and analyzes costs and benefits of
alternative policy options to reduce air pollution. LAU also
offers workshops to present and discuss the findings of the
studies and to launch action plans with interested parties.

4. (SBU) In response to a previous request from OPIC (e-mail
exchange), Post examined available information regarding the
Board of Directors of LAU, with the finding of no adverse
information. This includes further due diligence on two
members: Mohammad Safadi and Gilbert Chagoury. No further
action was deemed necessary.
FELTMAN

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