Berri: Amendments to Wage Scale, Tax Hike Bills Can't Be Discussed at Parliament Today

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Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri has expressed his “readiness to facilitate” the introduction of bills to amend some aspects of the wage scale law and the accompanying taxes to secure its funding resources, “if presented to the general assembly of the parliament,” the pan-Arab al-Hayat daily reported on Wednesday.

However, Berri's visitors quoted him as saying that "it is not possible to propose bills to the parliament to amend the wage scale law and taxes until after the publication of the two laws in the official gazette and after the signature of the President. Only then will there be no problem in discussing the law proposals,” the daily said.

"In any case, new law proposals cannot be put forward during today's session because there is a specific agenda that must be followed," unnamed sources clarified to the daily.

However the Speaker pointed out that he will “call for a new legislative session next week, where the said bills can be proposed.”

Unnamed sources told the daily that the appointment of Minister of Finance Ali Hassan Khalil and the Chairman of the Finance and Budget Committee Ibrahim Kanaan to formulate these proposals as a result of the economic dialogue meeting held on Monday in Baabda, aims to avoid the economic and social repercussions of what some considered as “gaps,” in the approved scale and taxes.

The two ministers had met shortly after Monday's economic dialogue meeting at Baabda in order set new draft laws aiming at tackling the “errors” in the wage scale and tax bills.

Berri has called the parliament for a meeting on Wednesday to study and approve draft laws listed on the agenda of the two previous sessions last month that saw the approvals of the salary scale and tax hike bills.

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