SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 28 October 2021, Thursday |

A new exchange rate for the dollar in the market

Karpowership has stopped supplying Lebanon with electric power from its two ships, Fatima Gul and Orhan Bay, located opposite the Jiyeh and Zouk factories, respectively, with the end of the contract this morning, and the company will begin the process of withdrawing the two ships.

Karpowership has been operating its two ships since 2013, supplying Lebanon with one of the energy sources and generating about 370 megawatts, or 25 percent of the total energy production in Lebanon, and the equivalent of 4-6 hours of electricity per day.

The Banque du Liban seeks to seize the dollars imported into Lebanon through money transfer companies, without forcing them to be paid to their owners in pounds. How will this process take place? The answer is in this report.

A new exchange rate for the dollar began to be adopted in the parallel market, bringing the number of approved rates to 6:

The official exchange rate at (1507 pounds), the price of bank withdrawals (3900 pounds), the Banque du Liban platform (about 15,000 pounds), the Sayrafa platform (12,000 pounds), and the real price of the dollar in the parallel market (at about 17,000 pounds). As for the new exchange rate, it is the price that money transfer companies will adopt to buy dollars sent from abroad, in case the individuals to whom those transfers are sent want to sell them and convert them into Lebanese pounds.

The Banque du Liban has recently allowed some money transfer companies to practice money exchange business, and granted them a license to buy dollars only at an exchange rate close to the black market, provided that they sell them back exclusively to the Central Bank.

The service that the money transfer companies have begun to provide is optional. Where it is possible for recipients of remittances from abroad in dollars, to sell them in part or in full. It does not mean at all that the payment of remittances from abroad will be in Lebanese pounds, or 50 percent in dollars and 50 percent in Lebanese pounds.

The goal of enabling money transfer companies to practice banking is the acquisition by the Banque du Liban, eager to support its hard currency reserves, on the dollars generated through these companies, which constitute a main source of dollars in the market, as 70 percent of the transfers received through them are less than 500 dollars, It is sold for personal consumption.

In addition, the Banque du Liban’s access to that cash in dollars will prevent it from being pumped into the black market to be controlled by speculators and manipulators in the exchange rate in the market.

The Syndicate of Private Hospital Owners announced that “after lifting the subsidy on diesel, the price of a ton of diesel became 620 dollars, and the cost of energy for each patient in the hospital rose to no less than 650,000 pounds per day, seven times the official room tariff.”

The Syndicate indicated that hospitals need 130 million liters of mazut annually, which makes the cost of operating their generators exceed the total amount that hospitals receive annually from all official guarantors.

It announced that hospitals cannot bear this burden, and it will be reflected in the cost of medicine in a dramatic way, and the patient in the end is the first victim, and therefore it is necessary to support the diesel allocated to hospitals.