Macron to visit Lebanon in 2nd half of 2019: French envoy

French Ambassador to Lebanon Bruno Foucher said Friday that French President Emmanuel Macron will visit Lebanon in the second half of this year after the Lebanese parliament passes the 2019 state budget, local media reported.

“The president will come after Lebanon gets over with its 2019 budget. France and the international community have promised to help Lebanon on condition that the country implements important structural reforms,” Foucher was quoted as saying by Elnashra, an online independent newspaper.

Foucher said that France is looking positively at the 2019 state budget approved by the Lebanese government.

“This is considered the first step in implementing reforms in the country,” he said.

Endorsing a state budget that slashes the deficit is among the measures that the Lebanese government has pledged to take as part of the key financial and economic reforms recommended at the CEDRE conference organized by France last year.

The CEDRE international conference has pledged more than 11 billion U.S. dollars in loans and donations to Lebanon if structural reforms are implemented in the country.