The Regie Distributes Certificates to Farmers' Children Participating in its Orientation and Career Guidance Sessions

18 September 2023

The Regie awarded certificates to the children of farmers participating

in its orientation and career guidance sessions.

Seklaoui: Proposals to increase the prices of local tobacco products in the budget

are ill-considered decisions that do not take into account the economic reality of the Lebanese market



In a speech delivered today, Tuesday, at a ceremony where certificates were distributed to children of tobacco farmers who participated in orientation and career guidance sessions, Eng. Nassif Seklaoui, Regie’s President – Director General, criticized the “proposed price increases on locally-produced tobacco products in the budgets of 2023 and 2024”.




He described these proposals as ill-considered decisions that fail to acknowledge the economic conditions prevailing in the Lebanese market.

The celebration took place at the Regie headquarters in Hadath and was attended by the representative of the parliament Speaker and Prime Minister, MP Kassem Hashem, Dr. Wassim Wehbe, representing the Minister of Finance, representatives of the Ministry of Finance, Presidents of the Tobacco Farmers’ Syndicate in the South, North and Bekaa, representatives of international tobacco companies, the government commissioner and the financial auditor.

The event featured the screening of a short film titled “From Field to Field” which provided a summary of the training program involving 61 children from tobacco and tumbac farming families in the South, North and Bekaa regions. The primary goal of this initiative was to equip these young participants with the knowledge and skills needed to make informed decisions regarding their university majors, aligning with their future aspirations.



This effort is in line with the Regie’s commitment to combat child labor, a key priority within its sustainable development agenda.

In his speech, Seklaoui noted that the “massive economic and social challenges” that Lebanon is facing “may be an incentive that motivates the Regie to overcome these difficulties.”

Seklaoui emphasized the unity within the Regie’s team highlighting the spirit of cooperation and collaboration with the farmers’ syndicates.




This effort is geared toward preserving both the administrative framework and the agricultural sector, recognizing that safeguarding the administration is paramount for protecting the sector as a whole.


Furthermore, he remarked "for those who may not realize the significance of sustainable development and social responsibility, particularly in our country, it’s evident that they are out of touch with the people’s needs. When we speak about sustainable development, we are referring to the enhancement of working conditions for farmers and the betterment of local communities."

He elaborated on the Regie’s commitment to combating child labor, a pressing issue that deprives children of educational opportunities. To address this challenge, the Regie initiated a program aimed at enabling children of farmers to take part in career guidance training.


He anticipated that this initiative would wield a substantial, positive influence on their future career choices.

Seklaoui also thanked the farmers’ families for their support of their children and their dedication to realizing their dreams, acknowledging the tremendous challenges they face. He noted that the Regie is acutely aware of the pressures confronting these families, particularly during the crop purchasing season. He then announced that, starting with the norther region on October 11, the Regie would continue its practice from the previous year of providing cash payments in US Dollars for the crops through financial companies.


Seklaoui pointed out the existence of “poorly thought-out decisions that disregard the actual conditions within the Lebanese market, even amidst the challenging economic environment that Lebanon currently faces.” He emphasized the Regie’s commitment to selling national brands, even though they yield only half of the expected profits, as a measure to combat the rampant issue of smuggling in Lebanon.

Furthermore, he criticized the proposals for the price increases outlined in the 2023 and 2024 budgets, highlighting the absence of a comprehensive study and drawing parallels with the detrimental experience of 1998.  

He emphasized that “maintaining a monopoly becomes pointless when borders are open to smuggling.” At the same time, he condemned the inclination of certain individuals to target a successful institution through the World Health Organization, as if Lebanon were akin to countries like Canada or Australia.”

In his closing remarks, he addressed the children of tobacco farmers in Akkar, the South and the Bekaa stating that “you are the offspring of this resilient seedling that has been a vital pillar of support for our communities in the South, Akkar and the Bekaa. You are a beacon of hope for the future of our nation, so never lose heart, as success often comes hand in hand with challenges. You are the agents of change in the coming future, so choose your professional path wisely. Remember, you are the offspring of this land, and it is your duty to nurture it, just the way it has nurtured you.”





As for the Chief of the Tobacco and Tumbac Farmers’ Syndicates, Hassan Fakih, he commended the remarkable efforts made by the administration over the span of three decades.

He stated that “It is a source of pride for us within the institution to engage in land cultivation, build agricultural roads, contribute to the establishment of libraries for farmers’ children, support local municipalities, initiate water projects, and offer direct assistance to students from farming backgrounds pursuing higher education and fostering their skill development.”




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