No Dollars Available For Fuel Imports In Lebanon Anymore
Dollars will not be provided for petrol imports in Lebanon anymore. This is the reason that the government subsidy has been completely lifted off petrol now. The decision comes after central bank decided to do so.
Lebanon has been reeling under great economic pressure due to which petrol has been a rare commodity to consume. The cost of 20 litres of petrol rose by 20,000 pounds ($13.2) recently, as per prices released by the energy ministry, to 638,000 pounds for 95-octane and 653,000 pounds for 98-octane. Those running their vehicles for a living are now having to shift to renewable forms of energy like solar power.
Since the onset of an economic crisis in 2019, Lebanon’s central bank has gradually reduced subsidies on food, fuel and medicine as the country burned through its foreign currency reserves. What subsidies remain are paid through the central bank’s Sayrafa platform, which sets a daily dollar rate that is lower than the parallel market rate to stem the rapid depreciation of the Lebanese pound.
Power outrage is another aftermath of fuel scarcity and Lebanon is suffering deeply because of this. With Hezbollah keeping a tight cap on gas fields, the access to sources of energy is limited or better still dry. As Israel Is trying to extract natural gas from shared territory, Hezbollah is busy cutting them, at the expense of the country’s resources going dry.
Hezbollah leader Nasrallah continues to claim that force is the only way to protect Lebanon’s interests, despite Lebanese leaders criticizing the terror group for the latest drone incident, saying it was an unnecessarily action that risked a conflict when Israel and Lebanon were close to an agreement on the Karish field.
The shortages are blamed on smuggling, hoarding and the cash-strapped government’s inability to secure deliveries of imported fuel. The crisis worsened when the government reduced subsidies on fuel amid a deepening financial crisis unfolding since 2019.