On January 8 2014, NEEDS held an inauguration lunch at Mosaic restaurant in Phonecia Hotel on the occasion of launching the implementation of NEEDS-FEA signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in presence of Dr. Mounir Yehia, NEEDS CEO with several NEEDS personnel, Dean of FEA Prof.
Makram Sweidan with ECE’s Chairman Prof. Farid Shaaban, and Director of office of Development Mrs. Oueida and AUB/FEA Professors, BOD/EDL member Mr. Walid Mezher with the Head of Program Management Committee Mr. Melhem Khattar and committee members. Dr. Mounir Yehia welcomed the attendees with a brief introduction, in which he mentioned the importance of the Distribution Service Providers (DSP) project in Lebanon where developing Smart Grids over the country is the heart of the project. Dr. Yehia reviewed the history of project’s evolution starting from the Electricity Policy Paper approved by the government in June 2010, followed by the persistent follow up of the MEW Minister Gibran Basil and the decision of the Board of Directors of EDL, ending by the role of the Program Management Committee. Moreover, Dr. Yehia highlighted the fact that this MOU will lead to the promotion of Smart Grids not just in Lebanon but also in the region, attributing the leading role to AUB and EDL based on the interaction between the scientific research and engineering practice. Dr. Yehia then pointed out that Lebanon should work to become once again one of the leading countries of the Arab World and referred to Dr. Badran - President of the Arabic Academy of Sciences and Petra’s University - during his closing address at the latest conference organized by Academy. Dr. Yehia ended his introduction by thanking Dean Sweidan and AUB for this cooperation and mentioned its emotional and general impact on his life having spent 14 years as a Professor and an Ex-Chairman of the ECE Department. The lunch carried on with interactive discussions on the wide horizon of cooperation among AUB, EDL, and NEEDS