Lebanon Daily News Brief: 6/9/2021
France to Host Support Meeting for the Lebanese Army
Yesterday France’s armed forces ministry announced that it will host a virtual meeting to seek support for the Lebanese army this month. The announcement follows Commander of the Lebanese Armed Forces Joseph Aoun’s warning of the military’s untenable situation as it struggles to maintain salaries while Lebanon’s currency plummets. The meeting is expected to gather aid for the army including food, medical supplies, and military equipment parts. [Reuters]
Iraq Agrees to Provide Oil to Lebanon
Following the Iraqi government’s approval this week, Iraq has agreed to provide 500,000 to one million tons of oil to Lebanon. A signed agreement between the two countries reportedly details a trade for Lebanon’s medical expertise for Iraqi oil. [Naharnet]
Lebanese Pound Drops Close to Record Low
The Lebanese pound fell close to its record low today at LL14,450 to the dollar on the black market. The drop follows the Central Bank’s order to Lebanese commercial banks yesterday to allow customers to withdraw up to $400 in fresh dollars plus the equivalent of $400 in Lebanese pounds. [The Daily Star]
Good Signs of Increased Tourism in Lebanon This Summer
Tourism is appearing to return to Lebanon this summer as restaurants and hotels are reporting large numbers of customers. The reports of increased foreign travelers and Lebanese expats visiting Lebanon comes at a time when ticket prices to Lebanon have increased 30 to 40 percent. [The 961]
OPINION & ANALYSIS
The Lebanese Center for Policy Studies
After the End of Subsidies in Lebanon: The Need for an Inclusive and Comprehensive Social Protection Strategy
Fadi Nicholas Nassar
LCPS writes: “Protecting and assisting those living through these crises requires modern, effective, and innovative strategies for social protection. Yet, the current system of social protection lacks cohesion, is ultimately unsustainable, and requires urgent overhaul. Until today, one of the central pillars of Lebanon’s social protection strategy is the Central Bank’s scheme of subsidizing essential consumer goods for wheat and food products, medicine, and fuel, which will have to be phased out over the coming months amid dwindling foreign exchange reserves.”
LCPS Senior Researcher Fadi Nicholas Nassar shares a series interviews with experts discussing Lebanon’s deteriorating situation, the existing subsidy structures, and what’s next as subsidies are lifted. Click the link below to read the interviews.
Robbed Of Their Future – Who Will Make It Right?
AbiNader writes: “The World Bank keeps ringing the alarms on how Lebanon’s disastrous leadership is abetting the collapse of the country, but to no avail. On June 1, it released the most recent Lebanon Economic Monitor entitled, ‘Lebanon Sinking to the Top 3,’ an ironic twist on achieving something that is far from desirable, becoming perhaps one of the worst economic crises in more than 150 years…With subsidies in sight, no apparent willingness to creatively stabilize the currency, and no movement to shrink the country’s budget, Lebanon’s governing class is running out of excuses. They must take needed steps toward reform or rescue themselves so that the hard work can begin.”
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the American Task Force on Lebanon, a non-profit, nonpartisan leadership organization of Lebanese-Americans.