Before he was detained in Japan over alleged financial misconduct, car industry tycoon Carlos Ghosn had increasingly invested time and money in Lebanon.
Ghosn is also a national of Brazil, where he was born, and of France. Here is a brief overview of his ties to the tiny Mediterranean country where his parents were born:
- Investment -
- The former head of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance in 2008 co-founded the Ixsir winery outside Beirut, which now produces around 500,000 bottles of wine a year.
- He holds 4.6 percent of the capital of Saradar Bank, whose assets and capital were worth $2.7 billion (2.35 billion euros) and $235 million respectively in September, according to data cited by Bank Audi.
- In the real estate sector, he has invested in several construction projects led by Conseil et Gestion Immobiliere (CGI), a Saradar Bank subsidiary.
- They include Cedrar, a project to build around 60 luxurious chalets near one of Lebanon's iconic Cedar tree reserves at a cost of around $30 million, according to a source who requested anonymity.
- Ghosn is accused of using a Nissan subsidiary to pay for a personal residence in Beirut, sources close to the Ghosn investigation have said.
- Discreet celebrity -
- Despite being a renowned figure, Ghosn kept a low profile on his visits to Lebanon, choosing to mingle with close friends and relatives.
- Many there see him as a glowing example of Lebanese business acumen, and the Beirut authorities in 2017 issued his image on a postal stamp.
- In 2003, the American University of Beirut (AUB) awarded Ghosn an honorary doctorate, and then made him a member of its board of trustees.
- He is also a member of the strategic board at the University of Saint Joseph (USJ), a prominent French-speaking institution.
- In 2012, USJ opened up a teaching position and masters programme in road safety management in partnership with the Renault Foundation, and it has inaugurated a space on campus named after the businessman.
- Over the past decade, Ghosn's name was whispered during two presidential crises in Lebanon. But acquaintances say he never expressed any interest in entering the country's politics.
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