An interactive fireside chat with Saade Chami, Deputy Prime Minister of Lebanon


The Middle East Institute’s Lebanon Program, in partnership with LIFE Lebanon and the Lebanese American University’s Institute for Social Justice and Conflict Resolution (ISJCR), invites you to an interactive fireside chat with Lebanese Deputy Prime Minister Saade Chami to explore the latest developments in finance to discuss Lebanon and socio-economic crises in light of the ongoing IMF negotiations. In a frank and candid meeting, the head of the Lebanese negotiating team with the IMF will discuss the hurdles ahead and urgent steps needed to resolve — not just resolve — Lebanon’s crisis of the century. Why have negotiations with the IMF dragged on? What compromises are Lebanon and its most vulnerable communities facing today? How should the systemic losses in the tens of billions be distributed? Are they distributed as they should be? Do international and regional partners play a role in crisis management?

To encourage public participation in such a critical conversation, an interactive poll will be shared with the audience to highlight key social and economic issues. To further strengthen inclusivity and meaningful participation in this dialogue, voices from disproportionately affected segments of the economy as well as vulnerable populations were invited to raise awareness of their priorities and concerns.


Fadi Nicholas Nassar (opening address)
Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs and Director of the Institute of Social Justice and Conflict Resolution, Lebanese-American University

Saade Chami
Deputy Prime Minister of Lebanon

Ronnie W Hammad (moderator)
Advisor, Office of the Vice President for Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions, World Bank

Detailed speaker bios

Fadi Nicholas Nassar
dr Fadi N. Nassar holds a PhD from the War Studies Department, King’s College, London. His dissertation examined decision-making in UN mediation efforts in Syria and provided a detailed account of the policies and strategies of Kofi Annan, Lakhdar Brahimi and Staffan de Mistura in Syria, and a new method to determine the agency of UN mediators in such sensitive and often clouded positions. This research served as the basis for his forthcoming book on the UN mediation process in Syria.

Saade Chami
Saade Chami was appointed Deputy Prime Minister of Lebanon on September 10, 2021. dr Chami spent 20 years at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) where he focused on economic and fiscal policy and the formulation of economic reform programs. He led IMF teams to several countries in the region and worked in many other countries in Europe, Africa and Asia. In his most recent position at the IMF, he served as assistant to the director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department and director of the IMF’s Middle East Technical Assistance Center. In 2013 he moved to Lebanon to serve as Secretary General of the Lebanese Capital Markets Authority. In 2018 he joined the National Bank of Kuwait as Group Chief Economist. Before joining the IMF, Dr. Chami studied Economics and Finance at the American University of Beirut’s Graduate School of Business between 1987 and 1993, where he also served as Director of the school from 1992 to 1993. Between 2005 and 2006 he also worked briefly at the Lebanese Prime Minister’s Office and Ministry of Finance, where he led a team to prepare a comprehensive economic reform program for Lebanon, which formed the basis for the Paris III plebiscite in early 2007. He also acted as an advisor to the Central Bank of Lebanon, Mckinsey and Co. and other public institutions.

Ronnie W Hammad
Ronnie Hammad works in the Office of the Vice President for Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions at the World Bank. He has over 30 years of experience working with senior government, private sector and civil society officials, implementing ambitious reform programs and managing complex projects in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Most recently, he was World Bank Adviser to the Saudi G20, assisting the Ministry of Finance and the G20 Secretariat in preparing for the 2020 presidency. His experience spans a range of sectors, from infrastructure public-private partnerships to public governance sector .

Photo by ANWAR AMRO/AFP via Getty Images


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