Bashar Al-Assad (848)

21-04-2021

The number of positive Covid-19 cases jumped by 2,530 last week, with more than half of them recorded in northeast Syria despite a full curfew there.

21-04-2021

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad dismissed Central Bank Governor Hazem Qarfoul a day before the Syrian pound was officially devalued for the second time in a year after sinking to record lows on the black market.

14-04-2021

The U.S. Department of Treasury has sought to reassure humanitarian agencies operating in Syria after growing criticism that sanctions designed to punish the regime are throttling aid to an increasingly impoverished population.

14-04-2021

The Central Bank of Syria (CBS) has introduced a new exchange rate for importers, merchants, and manufacturers in a bid to narrow the gap between the official and black market rates after the local currency sank to record lows against the US dollar.

14-04-2021

The Syrian government has introduced a new real estate sales tax law in a bid to increase state revenue, compounding upward pressure on property prices that have already soared as a result of the steep depreciation of the Syrian pound.

12-04-2021

This 2,200-word factsheet provides a profile of the Commercial Bank of Syria, the country's largest lender, whose history goes back to the Ottoman Empire and which is now under western sanctions.

07-04-2021

Disruptions to oil shipments from Iran, including the recent Suez Canal blockage, have intensified fuel shortages in Syria, paralysing the country’s public transportation system and stoking public anger.

07-04-2021

Updated April 07/2021:The combined credit portfolios of all microfinance lenders in Syria reached SYP 28.6 billion last year, while deposits reached SYP 16.9 billion, according to statistics released by the Central Bank of Syria (CBS) for the first time, highlighting the government’s growing interest in this sector.

31-03-2021

Prominent UK-based Syrian investor Ayman Asfari has sold his share in Gulfsands Petroleum to an investment firm owned by a Russian businessman, which now holds a controlling stake in the company.

31-03-2021

Syria's President Bashar Al-Assad has ratified a USD 13-million production sharing agreement (PSA) contract with Russian company Kapital LLC, further consolidating the dominance of Russian firms in the country’s oil and gas sector.

31-03-2021

Expected shipments of the Covid-19 vaccine to Syria have been postponed until an unspecified date, according to the World Health Organisation’s Syria office, opposition news website Enab Baladi reported. 

24-03-2021

The Syrian government has granted a one-off cash bonus to civil servants, military personnel and pensioners as the depreciation of the pound continues to erode the value of state employees’ wages.

24-03-2021

Syria will soon receive one million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, the World Health Organisation has said, as the number of positive coronavirus cases continued to rise sharply.

22-03-2021

This 2,200-word factsheet provides an overview of the Syrian tobacco sector, a major industry, particularly in the coastal area.

17-03-2021

Update on March 23, 2021:The number of positive cases has continued to increase, with 748 new cases registered across the country this week while areas outside the government’s control have yet to begin vaccination campaigns.

10-03-2021

Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad and his wife Asma Al-Assad tested positive for the coronavirus on February 08 according to an official statement issued by the president’s office.

10-03-2021

An Iranian delegation travelled to Damascus last week with the aim of enhancing technological ties between the two countries in a visit that included the signing of a deal for a new credit line.

03-03-2021

Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad has ratified a loan agreement with the Export-Bank of Malaysia for the financing of sewage and water projects by a Malaysian company, in a rare instance of foreign involvement in the country’s wartime economy.

03-03-2021

Syria’s second telecom operator MTN-Syria has been placed under the judicial custody of a minority stakeholder with reported links to the country’s First Lady Asma Al-Assad, as the government seeks to exert greater control over the company.

24-02-2021

Syria has issued a new law to regulate the establishment of microfinance banks, a sector which looks set to thrive in the near future given the increasingly large pool of low-income Syrians.

24-02-2021

The Russian company managing Syria's Tartous port has appointed a new manager, the fourth to serve in just two years, in another sign of the company’s struggles to calm the ongoing disputes with the company’s Syrian workers.

17-02-2021

A previously unknown company, Saray LLC, has won the rights to broadcast Syria’s football league for three seasons, according to local media reports.

17-02-2021

The Syrian government is planning to award major projects in the tobacco and steel sectors to private companies in a bid to win badly needed investment amid a lack of government funds.

10-02-2021

Updated on March 26,2021: Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad ratified a USD 22-million production-sharing agreement (PSA) contract with Russian company Stroytransgaz Engineering (STG-Engineering) in December, according to documents reviewed by The Syria Report.

27-01-2021

The Central Bank of Syria (CBS) has started to circulate SYP 5,000 notes, the highest ever denomination of the currency to be issued, in an acknowledgement of the intractable inflation that has been afflicting the country for years.

20-01-2021

The list below includes the names of all the individuals that have been blacklisted by the European Union since the beginning of the Syrian uprising in March 2011.

20-01-2021

The rapidly rising cost of living in Syria and widespread frustration with the government’s inability to halt the deteriorating conditions have led to some surprising—if still limited—displays of discontent in recent weeks, including critical posts on social media and even small demonstrations.

13-01-2021

The two state-owned Syrian companies producing alcoholic drinks reported a surge in volume sales and in revenues last year after an increase in prices failed to dampen demand.

06-01-2021

The United States blacklisted the Central Bank of Syria at the end of last year, adding pressure on the Syrian government as it tries to maintain its fractured economy.

06-01-2021

Lebanon’s Bank Audi will sell all shares of its Syrian subsidiary to Banque Bemo Saudi Fransi and quit the country, in the latest reversal to Syria’s pre-war economic liberalisation.

06-01-2021

A second bonus was granted to Syrian state employees, pensioners, and the military for the year 2020, drawing on savings from reductions in subsidy programmes, according to government officials. It came two months after the issuance of a similar bonus.

23-12-2020

Syria is planning to issue a long-awaited licence for a third telecoms operator at the beginning of next year, according to the country’s telecommunications minister.

16-12-2020

Cham Capital LLC, a brokerage firm partially owned by Rami Makhlouf, is preparing to close soon, according to a source in the brokerage sector, a move highlighting the ongoing toll of the spat between the government with one of Syria’s most prominent businessmen.

09-12-2020
The text below is an edited transcript of a speech by Bashar Al-Assad at an expanded meeting of the Ministry of Religious Endowments on December 07, 2020.
02-12-2020

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad has ratified an amendment to an Iranian credit line worth USD 1 billion, removing the final barriers to the long-delayed deal and further cementing Tehran’s economic and political influence in the country.

25-11-2020

Two private Syrian banks owned partially by foreign investors have taken steps to rebrand, in a move to reduce the risk for foreign shareholders a few months after the enactment of the Caesar Act.

18-11-2020
The text below is a transcript of a Bashar Al-Assad speech in the International Conference on Return of Refugees on November 11, 2020. The text was originally published by state news agency, SANA.

11-11-2020

The text below is a transcript of a video call meeting between Bashar Al-Assad and Vladimir Putin on November 09, 2020. The text was originally published by state news agency, SANA.

11-11-2020

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad has sought to place blame for Syria’s economic crisis on Syrians who transferred their money to Lebanese banks, portraying these transfers as a major factor alongside sanctions and other fallout from the conflict.

11-11-2020

The international accounting firm Deloitte’s regional branch decided to close its offices in Syria at the start of the year, joining a growing list of large professional-services firms which have left Syria since the start of the conflict, The Syria Report has learned.

28-10-2020

Following a sharp rise in the price of petrol and fuel last week, the Syrian president has reduced the income tax levied on wage earners in a bid to raise net incomes but also to spare the government a much costlier salary increase.

28-10-2020

A nearly two-decade-old decision by the Supreme Administrative Court has finally been enacted to return the Terra Sancta school and monastery in Aleppo to its original owners, the Franciscan Order of the Latins community, giving the Syrian regime another opportunity to present itself as a defender of minorities.

21-10-2020

The Syrian government’s regular decisions to freeze the assets of prominent businessmen help provide an indication of the status of these individuals and of their relationship with the Syrian authorities.

21-10-2020

A new attempt by Rami Makhlouf to lift sanctions imposed by the European Union on his companies and two family members failed again this month.

21-10-2020

Dozens of fires in the provinces of Lattakia, Tartous Homs and Hama have caused large-scale damage to agricultural areas and led to the evacuation of many people from their homes and lands.

14-10-2020

The full transcript of the interview of Bashar Al-Assad by Rossiya Segodnya News Agency on October 08, 2020.

14-10-2020

A delegation of high-ranking Syrian officials visited Moscow last week to meet with Russian diplomatic and technical officials and push forward a wide-ranging economic agreement which is due to be settled in December.