October - December  1 9 9 9
Environmental clean-up precedes waterfront development
   SOLIDERE proceeded this quarter with an important phase of the city center waterfront environmental clean-up. The operation, led by Radian International (US), covers 18 ha of land and involves five million cubic meters of materials. Fairhurst International (UK) is construction manager.
 The works are expected to be completed by the end of 2003.
    The US$53 million project is partly financed by a US$22 million syndicated loan about to be concluded with Citibank. A US$27 million loan, with a guarantee from the US Export-Import Bank, is awaiting approval.

    In the plant delivered in the fall by Duos Engineering B.V. (Netherlands), materials are sorted for recycling or treatment. This is followed by the crushing of inert materials, with the composting of biodegradable materials taking place in parallel. An on-site laboratory records biochemical analyses of samples before and after treatment. Trees are growing in the nursery in preparation for the 72,000 sq m waterside park. Backfilling is continuing in the northern part of the new land. The civil works for the marina have been completed, with the promenade to be delivered in the new year. The completion of the sea defense structure in the spring will be followed by the development of the marina facilities.
    The area south of the Radian site, already cleaned, planned and equipped with  infrastructure, is the object of important real estate development, including the twin project of the Four Season Hotel and Marina Towers luxury residential complex.


Recovery hopes for SOLIDERE


At the end of a difficult year, renewed optimism about SOLIDERE is prevailing among public and private circles.
Just before Christmas, the President of the Republic General Emile Lahoud made his first official visit to the city center, where he was briefed about the project by vice-chairman Maher Beydoun and a number of Company staff contractors.
    The last quarter had already witnessed serious endeavors on the part of the authorities to resolve all outstanding issues with the Company. This included administrative hurdles that were delaying the implementation of some projects, both by SOLIDERE and other developers.
    Particular efforts were deployed to that effect by Prime Minister Salim Hoss, Public Works and Transportation minister Najib Mikatim Council for Development and Reconstruction president Mahmoud Osman, Beirut Mahafez (governor) Yaacoub Sarraf, Beirut Municipality president Abdelmonem Ariss and director-general for Urban Planning Joseph Abdel Ahad, together with the staff of all the above public agencies.
    Favorable statements about SOLIDERE were made by Finance minister George Corm, Beirut Stock Exchange president Fadi Karam and fellow board members, Nabil Aoun, head of the stockbrokers' committee, as well as a number of banks and investment analysts. Optimism about the economy in general, and SOLIDERE in particular, was fueled by improved prospects for the Middle East peace process.
    Reflecting this confidence, investors confirmed their interest in acquiring and/or occupying property in the city center, and a number of sales were realized at year-end.
- A property in the Zokak El Blatt area with 1,000 sq m floor was sold to Mr. M.Y. Dogmoch, to serve as his private residence.
- Messr. Bechara Nammour and Sami Ghosn acquired four built lots with 2800 sq  m of floor space to develop a residential project in the Saifi area.
- Six built lots and one empty lot were sold to Mr. Salim Khaireddin in Wadi abou Jamil in the Minet El Hosn area. They will be developed into a boutique hotel with 10,000 sq m floor space.
    Mr. Khaireddin also purchased from SOLIDERE a plot of land adjacent to a neighboring villa, which he had a previously acquired from a third part for his residential use.
- The Company finalized the sale to Mr. Nemr Diab of an empty lot in the Marfa' area, for a residential project along Park Avenue, with 13,000 sq m of floor space, extendable to 18,000 sq m.
     The supply of residential space by SOLIDERE has met with success, even in the recessive 1999 environment. All restored properties are already occupied, and the launching of the new Saifi Village apartments has elicited a very positive response. This suggests the existence of a pent-up demand for the SOLIDERE type of products, which is encouraging the Company to continue to put similar products on the market.
Performance of the shares during the 4th quarter

   After reaching an all-time low of US$6, SOLIDERE shares turned around decisively around the beginning of November.
    Share A closed the quarter at a five-month high of US$8 3/8, registering a 21.82% rise over the previous quarter closing price.
Similarly, share B closed at a five-month high of US$8 1/2, 17.24% above the previous quarter closing price.
        The move came amidst some positive economic and political news coming from the area.
        The breadth of the market improved likewise, as buy volume outnumbered sell volume by a 5 to 4 ratio.

Share price (US dollars)      Trading volume