BEIRUT — The syndicate of traders and importers of fresh, chilled and frozen meat warned in a statement on Thursday of “the closure of farms and meat warehouses and the halt of meat imports, if Banque du Liban does not pay the dues for suppliers before Ramadan [the month of Islamic fasting],” which will begin in early April.
Here’s what we know:
• The syndicate attributed the meat crisis and the rise in prices to “the decline in import operations due to BDL’s retention of suppliers' dues, the increasing price of fuel and the cost of transportation, in addition to the international increase in prices of meat and livestock.”
• The syndicate called on concerned authorities to “intervene immediately with the Banque du Liban and urge it to pay the year’s worth of dues, which were only partially paid, harming the interests of importers and traders.”
• Since 2019, Lebanon’s national currency has lost over 90 percent of its value on the parallel market. Traders have repeatedly voiced concerns about BDL’s late processing of payments, deteriorating living conditions and the increase in fuel prices.