The black market dollar continues its dramatic downwards course, as it ranged this Tuesday morning, between 20,300 Lebanese pounds for purchase and 20,200 Lebanese pounds for sale. The Lebanese Ministry of Finance said in a document of the draft budget for 2022 that it plans to adopt a “realistic exchange rate” in the budget, without specifying an exchange rate.
The draft budget set the average exchange rate of the Lebanese pound during the last quarter of 2021 at about 20 thousand pounds and 10,083 during the whole year. The official exchange rate, which is applied in government transactions, including customs tariffs, is still about 1,500 pounds to the dollar.
The Lebanese pound has lost more than 93 percent of its value since summer 2019, when it began breaking away from the exchange rate of 1,500 LBP to the dollar, which has been pegged since 1997.
A month ago, Lebanon’s Central Bank had set a new rate of 8,000 Lebanese pounds to the US dollar for withdrawals from bank deposits denominated in dollars but which can now only be accessed in the local currency.