| 29 September 2022, Thursday |

The State’s budget between unpopular measures to increase revenues, international community’s requirements

Among the reform measures required by the international community, mainly the International Monetary Fund (IMF), is approving the Public Procurement Law. For this aim, the National Public Procurement Reform Strategy in Lebanon was launched today. Prime Minister Najib Mikati made it clear that launching this strategy is in line with the recommendations of the international community, which closely follows this issue and considers it the third priority after electricity and judicial reforms.

Mikati called on international partners and donors to help the government put this strategy into action urgently, and to provide the resources and technical support required, especially since the Public Procurement Law enters into force in July, and any delay in its implementation will be read as a negative and dangerous indicator for the government’s credibility.

With the government’s return to holding its sessions next week, the draft budget for 2022 is prioritized as it constitutes the cornerstone of negotiations with the IMF. So, will the government succeed in approving a real budget that meets the requirements of the international community, even though its provisions will inevitably include unpopular measures such as lifting subsidies entirely for vital materials, raising electricity and communications tariffs, in addition to the customs dollar?

To shed light on this topic, Alia Moubayed, an economist, joined us via Zoom.

The Minister of Telecommunications Johnny Corm announced that a meeting was held in Ogero, which concluded that a sufficient amount of diesel was secured for the month of June. Corm pointed out that until now, he has not sent the ministry’s budget figures, but intensive meetings are being held this week to finalize the tariffs issue, as this matter requires a great effort “because we have to consider the people’s purchasing power,” expecting the ministry’s budget to be presented early next week.

  • Sawt Beirut International