Construction work on Lebanon’s $8.2bn man-made Cedar Island project is still on hold as the project’s developer, the local Noor International, awaits government approval.

“We are doing the best we can to start the development as soon as possible,” says a Noor source. He adds that the company does not know when government approval will be granted.

In April 2009, Noor said work on the development would be delayed until after parliamentary elections on 7 June. However, the required government approval has still not been received by the developer since then.

Noor prequalified up to eight international dredging contractors to work on the first phase of the project’s construction in February 2009.

A second phase covering general civil work and infrastructure work on the island is also planned.

The tree-shaped island is planned for a site southwest of Beirut. According to Noor, the development will take four years to complete and will provide accommodation for 40,000 people.