1. Various of Sigrid Kaag, the Netherlands' Minister for Foreign Trade, Development and Cooperation, and Gebran Bassil, Lebanese Minister of Foreign Affairs, during meeting
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Sigrid Kaag, Minister for Foreign Trade, Development and Cooperation of the Netherlands:
"There is no country, I've always said this, like Lebanon, or Jordan, that as been able to host so generously, express solidarity without fail for such a period of time, and the international community, in this case the Kingdom of the Netherlands, will try its best to do more and in a long-term strategic way to help Lebanon not only weather, overcome but also look towards real measurable, tangible prosperity because it benefits stability, security, but it's also what you deserve, it is the least of what you deserve. There are many areas that we discussed, there is indeed, as the minister (Bassil) mentioned, 200 million euros available as grants to Lebanon, these are not loans, these are grants, with additional financing dependent on the implementation of the Cedre conference."
3. Kaag and Bassil during news conference
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Gebran Bassil, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lebanon:
"The Netherlands offered to host an evaluation meeting of the Cedre conference in 2019, actually the third meeting of the strategic planning group is scheduled to be held in the Kingdom of the Netherlands next spring. We thank the Dutch government for allocating funds for the Syrian crisis through the Lebanese Red Cross, the social and educational assistance, the water management, the assistance for the military apparatus and so many other fields."
5. Various of Kaag and Bassil shaking hands and leaving
The Dutch minister for foreign trade, development and cooperation visited Lebanon on Monday.
Sigrid Kaag, a former top UN special coordinator for Lebanon, told Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil that the Netherlands would support the Middle Eastern country's economy.
The Netherlands pledged 200 million euros (234.7 million US dollars at the so-called "Cedre" conference - an international summit held in Paris last April aimed at strengthening Lebanon's economy burdened by the high number of Syrian refugees.
At the conference in Paris, the donor countries promised funding for infrastructure and economy projects to help stabilise Lebanon for a total of 11 billion US dollars in grants and soft loans.
The Netherlands will host a follow-up summit of the International Support group for Lebanon in 2019, Bassil said.
Lebanon hosts around one million registered Syrians who account for roughly a quarter of the tiny country's population and officials in the country have said that Lebanon can no longer afford the strain on its fragile economy.