Search
Search

Subsidies

Salameh reportedly says central bank can no longer subsidize fuel

Demonstrators carry Lebanese flags and a banner depicting BDL Gov. Riad Salameh as they head toward a central bank building during an anti-government protest in the southern city of Sur in 2019. (Credit: Aziz Taher/Reuters)

BEIRUT — Banque du Liban Gov. Riad Salameh said on Wednesday he could no longer open lines of credit for fuel imports or subsidize its purchase, a ministerial source and Al Jadeed said.

Reuters could not immediately reach Salameh for comment on his remarks, reportedly made during a meeting of the Higher Defense Council.

Lebanon is suffering crippling fuel shortages as a result of a financial crisis that sunk the lira by more than 90 percent against the US dollar in less than two years.

Since the onset of the crisis, the central bank has been using its dollar reserves to finance fuel imports at official exchange rates that have been well below the price at which dollars have been changing hands on the parallel market.

The government raised fuel prices in June after the central bank began extending credit lines for fuel at a rate of LL3,900 to the dollar, more than the official rate of LL1,500 pounds but still well below the parallel market rate.

Dollars were changing hands at about LL20,000 on the parallel market on Wednesday.


BEIRUT — Banque du Liban Gov. Riad Salameh said on Wednesday he could no longer open lines of
credit for fuel imports or subsidize its purchase, a ministerial
source and Al Jadeed said.
Reuters could not immediately reach Salameh for comment on
his remarks, reportedly made during a meeting of the Higher Defense Council.
Lebanon is suffering...