Lebanese PM Mikati Mobilizes Committee For Talks With IMF
Lebanon–Lebanon government has finally got down to organizing a committee that can tackle the economic meltdown and speak to the International Monetary Fund. The country has never seen a balanced government function. The step seems to have come after Saad Hariri has been replaced by another billionaire politician Najib Mikati.
In the year 2021, the Lebanese public debt exceeded $95 billion, to reach the threshold of $96 billion, during the first month of 2021. The total public debt has increased by about $3.94 billion, compared to the level it was in January of the year 2020, which amounted to $92 billion. The public debt is distributed between 62.24% in national currency and 37.75% in foreign currencies. Under Mikati’s leadership, there is some semblance of hope for the dilapidated economic fabric of Lebanon.
As his first action into good diplomacy, he met with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron who also urged that Lebanon must look at anti-corruption reforms or risk sanctions.
While the committee has been put together, keeping in mind the mess with IMF in the past, Mikati feels it will take end of the year to reach a viable solution. Meanwhile, France has agreed to help Lebanon address its economic woes. The government of his predecessor, Hassan Diab is known to have suspended talks with the IMF after Parliament, the central bank and commercial banks opposed the financial rescue plan the leader put forward on the advice of financial advisory firm Lazard.
Lebanon has greatly suffered at the hands of corruption within its political setup. An ineffective leadership has never been able to curtail corruption. According to political experts, Lebanon first needs to fill-in this leak, then put some laws and resolutions into place so that some concrete action is seen on ground. In focus should be primarily, the banking sector, amongst other measures.