The “biggest challenge” … billions of dollars between investment or transactions

While Lebanon is drowning in a spate of quarrels and sterile disputes over constitutional benefits whose term extends for months with open ceilings, and its owners are seen as desperate to preserve their authoritarian positions of survival Of personal interests guarantee, the Lebanese are drowning in waves of a different kind, as the economic collapse begins to threaten which is worse, especially As the controlling authority continues to push the crises to worsen, ignoring the horizons of solutions that hiding in local and external channels.

It is true that economic stagnation is upsetting the world’s governments, and the financial sector officials of the Group of Twenty meeting on the Indonesian island of Bali are concerned, amid the continuing rise in inflation and poor growth prospects, but the fear seems greater than the failure of the meeting to reach a “consensus”, which will have catastrophic effects on countries Low incomes, with rising food and energy prices as a result of the war against Ukraine, are the “biggest challenge” for the global economy , according to Janet Yellen, US Treasury Secretary.

Where is Lebanon in terms of these economic fears, when it is caught up in and around its internal policies and its regional ties that warn of consequences that have become the “biggest challenge” to the Lebanese economy with regard to the brake on its rapid fall?

A few days ago, the Deputy Prime Minister of the Provisional Government, His Excellency Al-Shami, spoke at a university meeting and stated a number of facts that required a pause or a standpoint from those involved in policy-making, after reading the rules and what is behind them, especially since the numbers are enough to convey messages about the level of risks, to those who do not understand and are not considered. The economy is also a “priority”. Although the Lebanese media is flooded daily with analyzes and predictions, most of which tend to be pessimistic, there are deep questions that need clarification about the short-term characteristics of the next phase, which seem much darker.

The local horizon is blocked until the constitutional obligations are completely cut off, while the regional horizon oscillates between the blessing of gas and the curse of exploitation and export against the drums of the war between Israel and Iran. As far as the world is concerned, it is controlling the fears of stagflation in anticipation of the coming “storms” on the way to the continued rise in oil and food prices, inflation and unemployment. In the midst of this time lapse, is anyone interested in volunteering to put Lebanon back on track in the path of the international community? In an interview with the “Lebanese Forces” website, economic analyst Violet Ghazal al-Balaa asks, believing that the first steps should start from within, as the facts indicate that the solution starts with correcting deviations in political performance, withdrawing from an evaluation of collapsed institutions and sectors, and a revival of an economy that has become a proportion Its contraction is equal to 60 per cent, and to restore its confidence, the crisis has drained 90 per cent of its value .

To date, there is no comprehensive government program to resolve the crisis. The recovery plan presented by Najib Mikati’s government is about the consequences, not the causes. Even the oral supplement that Mikati has submitted to Parliament is not sufficient to provide a comprehensive vision that can persuade the international community to help with the rescue. In addition to all this, Al-Balaa says the plan needs political coverage to reassure the international community to carry out the list of economic and financial reforms that have expanded over the past two years, to include in addition to the electricity sector , reducing the size of the public sector and the regular issuance of financial budgets, new items such as the unification of exchange rates, and restructuring of the banking sector.

In addition, Al-Bal’ah believes that the caretaker government should continue to act as a crisis, firstly to address the “bleeding” of the reserves of the Banque du Liban, which has been drained by the support policies pursued by the government of Hassan Diab with suspicious arbitrariness, perhaps to cover the sin of Lebanon’s bankruptcy by the decision to default in March 2020. And the case looks more like an emergency, at the cost of support from which the Lebanese have only benefited with “anecdotes”. approached, about $ 20 billion in two years of depositors’ money.

Regarding the fund proposed by more than one party to invest the state’s assets at an estimated $ 20 billion, Al-Bala’a says that what is required is to make a decisive choice after consultation with stakeholders , including banks, in order to determine. a fund, sovereign or investment, which does not matter, in order to properly invest resources that can It will generate revenue of about five billion dollars over the next six years, according to the Deputy Prime Minister, His Excellency Al-Shami, announced a few days ago. With these billions, she adds, they are able to increase, after reaching the three billion expected from the IMF, if invested outside the “transactions” approach because of the impact it has in the government and private economy can have, thus stimulating local and foreign investment to resume its activity.

As for the criminal investigation, which is the achievement that the Covenant and the Free Patriotic Movement are desperate to crown the end of an unprecedented era in the history of Lebanon, the bolus believes that it is supposed to be a normal procedure of its importance, and not malicious for purposes intended to undermine the governor of the Banque du Liban and hold him responsible for all the collapse due to the beating of birds Many with one blow, and stressed the need to to include all ministries, of which the Ministry of Finance is the most important. , which is responsible for budgetary activities, which has been absent for eleven years, without transparency in the movement of expenditure and revenue. This was followed by the Ministry of Energy, which drained the treasury, from the funds of the Bank of Lebanon and then from the money of depositors, about $ 47 billion over two decades, to provide the Lebanese with a strange performance with “zero electricity”. . ”

Al-Bala’a says the preaching of not forming a new government and Lebanon’s acceptance of a presidential vacuum after two months is nothing more than a negative achievement that adds official Lebanon to its world record, which is set by the IMF. as well as confirmed to donor countries. that Lebanon’s failure as a state is the work of its rulers, not its people

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