Lebanon Businessnews News

Foreign currency reserves
$22 billion at-hand
No ‘Haircut’ and fuel tax

VAT to be increased on luxury goods

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The Minister of Finance, Ghazi Wazni, said that the foreign currency reserves at the Central Bank are $29 billion, of which the BDL has loaned $7 billion to banks for their external and internal obligations. This effectively brings at-hand reserves to $22 billion.

On the reforms he said: “Electricity is the main source of financial bleeding and will be one of the most prominent reforms, as well as reducing interest rates, and judicial appointments.”

Wazni said: “Some of the not-yet final proposals to reduce public expenditures require reducing the deficit of Electricité du Liban, such as raising tariffs but not on low-income people. It also includes raising VAT on luxury goods, and raising fees on some goods, but it will not impose new taxes on gasoline.”

He said: “There will be no ‘Haircut’ on large depositors, and there are many measures to address the situation of banks. Mergers are a prerequisite in addition to pumping $20 billion to $25 billion from abroad.”
Date Posted: Mar 10, 2020
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