Caretaker Minister of Economy, Amin Salam, affirmed on Friday that “wheat subsidies will be maintained”. “Socially, the country cannot bear lifting subsidies,” he said at a press conference, noting that “any subsidy lifting will be done in a rational way”.
“We have the funds and credits to guarantee the production of bread; credits of more than USD 12 million are currently allocated for this purpose, and more funds are expected,” Salam said.
The minister then pledged to continue to find solutions to the delay caused by the Lebanese Central Bank to release the funds necessary for wheat or flour imports.
Salam also argued that there currently existed a state of emergency, stating that he had discussed with trade unions solutions to the bread shortages.
He said that “the World Bank has approved a loan of USD 150 million for the supply of wheat to Lebanon for six months and to avoid shortages”.