By Paromita Dey
Former Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri is reportedly set to sell struggling firm to Saudi gov't
Former Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri is reportedly in Saudi Arabia to finalise the sale of his company Saudi Oger to the Saudi Government.
Oger has been hit hard by a slowdown in the Saudi construction sector due to low oil prices and state spending cuts. This is the reason why wage payments to thousands of its workers have been delayed for months, according to Saudi media and the workers themselves.
The Arabic daily, Al Akhbar quoted unnamed sources as saying that talks between Hariri and the Saudi governmentwere in their final stages.
“The agreement, expected to be reached within 10 days, would centre on the government or businessmen from the ruling family taking ownership of the company," the newspaper said.
The newspaper also reported that Hariri was negotiating to keep a stake in the company, proposing to keep 40%.
It was revealed that the Riyadh-based contractor owes its employees, salaries amounting to $800m (SAR3bn), in addition to dues owed to contractors and exporters, and money to be repaid for loans from local and international banks.