Is it correct to regard the agreement signed with the International Monetary Fund as a “notice” of the decision issued by the international, Arab and Lebanese community, that the political, economic and banking system has lapsed? The determination of the alternative and the date of the transition remain subject to the regional settlement and, consequently, the internal settlement. As well as the readiness of the system to be voluntarily “removed from the road”, as Saad Hariri did, or to be removed by coercion and sanctions. Note that the most likely possibility is that the pillars of the system, after desperate attempts to lighten the street, will bend before the storm, and rush to change their skins and affiliations. Of course, the “large international community” will accept because it is concerned about preserving its interests, and not interested in building states and institutions.
On what is this conclusion based?
It is based solely on the terms of the agreement with the Fund, and on the observation of clear data and facts.
Or not: Read the post
Let us first note that unlike the authorities’ understanding and harmony with the Fund’s team during the negotiations, the team was involved in conveying a specific message, namely that the implementation of the reforms introduced 20 years ago was known, the essential condition is not only for obtaining funding and for the “seal of the Fund”, but for the continuity of negotiations. And that it is no longer acceptable to “dot” illusory plans and false promises, as the time for sharing and cleverness is over. This was stated by one of the team members who commented on the recovery plan and the draft Capital Management Act: “Please respect our thoughts.” Consequently, it would not be surprising for politicians and bankers to wage a brutal war against the fund, and for the Association of Banking Pillars to surpass Hezbollah by enacting the precepts and conditions of submission that affect sovereignty and national dignity. reject.
Change of ownership and management of banks
The reluctance of the banks and their supporters of the agreement is fully justified Of the eight urgent measures mentioned in the agreement, five relate exclusively to the banking and monetary sector. It is clear from a careful reading of these measures that:
1- A radical change in the ownership and management of banks to break the alliance or identification between politicians and bankers, because in the light of such banks and bankers it is impossible to talk about economic recovery and restore confidence in investments and pumping transfers, and even taking money out of homes. The agreement stipulated in one of its clauses that the government “will issue a bank restructuring strategy that recognizes and addresses losses in advance, while protecting small depositors and restricting the use of public resources” (especially BDL reserves). The Fund was not satisfied with that, but insisted on immunizing the government decision by law. The agreement stipulated in another clause that “Parliament will issue emergency legislation to settle bank terms.”
Depreciation of bank capital
2- The banks and their major shareholders bear a large share of the losses estimated at about $ 70 billion, as evidenced by the text on “the protection of small depositors and not the use of public resources.” The available data indicate that small deposits according to the classification approved so far, ie those that are less than 150 thousand dollars, amount to about 25 billion dollars, which is roughly equivalent to the capital of banks which is about 20 billion dollars estimated, in addition to the money that banks keep in their safes and correspondent banks. In a clearer sense, the tendency is to use the banks’ own funds to cover part of the losses. It presents bank owners and their political allies with two options; Either inject billions of dollars to keep their banks afloat, or leave the market to establish new “clean” banks. It is not excluded that the owners of medium deposits constitute the greatest weight of the shareholders in these banks to enforce their presence on the boards and in the management. It is also not excluded that the expected political settlement will be reflected in the sectarian composition of the banking sector, as we find that there are one or more banks affiliated with the Shiite sect.
Recover the stolen money
3- We come to the “third of the treasures” included in the agreement, which is the siege of the major shareholders, who are mostly politicians, their relatives and their partners of money and businessmen, to expose corruption activities and forcing them to return even a portion of the stolen money in banks, or which they have transferred abroad. We note that the agreement included two related and supplementary clauses; The first states “the initiative of the House of Representatives to amend the Bank Secrecy Act to harmonize it with international anti-corruption standards and to effectively remove obstacles to the restructuring and supervision of the banking sector and tax administration, Detection and investigation of financial crimes, and asset recoveryAs for the second item, it states that “the process of evaluating and auditing the terms of the 14 largest banks (which account for more than 82% of deposits and advances) should begin immediately.” What’s worse is that the agreement stipulates that a “reliable international company” will take on the task. The investment process expands to affect the central bank, as the last clause of the fund agreement “provides for the completion of the audit of the foreign asset status of the Banque du Liban”.
These clauses are critical because Lebanon may be the only country in the world that still applies an extremely strict banking secrecy law. This hinders any restructuring of banks, as well as the identification of corrupt, fraudulent and financial engineering that has taken place, in addition to the collection of funds.
As for the Capital Control Act, which the government is trying to enforce, it has become clear that it is a “corrupt commodity” that you will not get anyone to buy, firstly because it is “like going to Hajj and returning people,” ”And secondly because it is more like a new monetary and credit law, which the politician-banker class imagines it will protect.
Second: Read the data
There is a lot of data that confirms the expiration of the political, economic and financial system, and we will suffice to name the most important of them. First, we note that “Lebanon poses a unique challenge to the Biden administration,” as Foreign Affairs magazine mentioned in an important report on Lebanese corruption (see “Al-Modon”). This administration, which has raised the slogan that “fighting corruption is one of the components of American national security,” and which is waging a “bone-breaking” war with China under the slogan of fighting corruption and promoting democracy, can not continue to work with a banking political class that has filled the world with news of its corruption, and committed what has been described The biggest theft in history. Let us note that America has abandoned countries and regimes a hundred times more important than Lebanon to restore its wasted credibility and to strengthen its leadership of democracies and the free world. It can not continue to cast ashes in the eyes, “and be content with the punishment of some politicians and businessmen who oppose its policies, with the aim of limiting Hezbollah’s influence and turning a blind eye to the corruption of his friends, “according to Foreign Affairs reports.
This applies to the European countries and the rest of the donor countries, who are desperate about this system which is still evading all its commitments to reform Cedar 1 and 2 until the Lebanon Support Conference in December 2020, which strikes all forms of support for Lebanese state institutions and adequacy Providing generous assistance to NGOs.
We wonder, is it just a coincidence that reports and research relate to the corruption of the Lebanese political class in major media and research centers such as CNN and Foreign Affairs, as well as audits in America and Europe of the activities of Lebanese banks and the Banque du Liban, especially with respect to major transfers over the past two years, is just coincidental. Is it just a coincidence that the direct accusations of corruption by the political class in an unusual way by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, for example, who described the activities of the Central Bank and banks as a “Ponzi- scheme “, as well as the World Bank, which attributed the crisis to the corruption of politicians, who saw it as a case of” regular depression “by an elite that took over the state and lived off its rent.”
The question remains, is the system convinced that the time of looting and “looting” is over, after the state’s udders have dried up, the depositors ‘crops have dried up and the donors’ rain has been retained, and that the agreement with the International Monetary Fund is just a “notice” of its expiration date?