Beirut: Lebanese President Michael Owen on Monday stressed that Lebanon is “committed to implementing the necessary reforms”, but said the country “needs the IMF program within the limits applicable in Lebanon”.
Oun’s stance coincided with a warning from outgoing Prime Minister Najib Mikati, who called on the international community to work with Lebanon to ensure the return of Syrian refugees to their country. Meaning and firm application of Lebanese law “.
Oun met with Federico Lima, the newly appointed International Monetary Fund (IMF) representative in Beirut, and called for speedy reforms, including capital controls, banking secrecy and other measures related to the restructuring of the financial sector.
In April, Lebanon and the IMF signed a staff-level agreement, a statement of intent between the IMF mission and the Lebanese delegation. However, prior to signing, Lebanon must comply with all conditions set by the IMF.
The country is politically divided over the economic recovery plan, the establishment of the independence of the judiciary, the development of a plan credible to the power sector, and the avoidance of brokerage, quotas and distribution. Service plans.
The country has not implemented the IMF regulations for the past two years since the talks began. The provisions include, for example, the consolidation of Bank du Liban exchange rates, the development of a clear strategy for restructuring the medium and long-term public debt, the development of an approved strategy for the restructuring of the banking sector, and the audit of the bank’s budgets. These budgets determine its financial position and the amount of money left over in foreign currencies, thus developing transparency.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Social Affairs on Monday requested the government to provide $ 3.2 billion to provide life-saving assistance and support to public institutions, services and infrastructure needed to address the long-term effects of the Syrian crisis. Lebanon’s local economy.
During the launch of Lebanon’s Crisis Response Plan, Mikati recalled that Lebanon has been hosting Syrian expatriates for more than 11 years. As resources become increasingly limited due to the financial crisis, increased support for displaced people and Lebanese host communities remains a priority for the Lebanese government and its partners.
“We urge the Lebanese people, their government and their government to work together with the IDPs to meet their immediate needs and to overcome the obstacles to their safe return to their homeland,” Mikati told the international community. , “Our current situation is quite different from what it was before, because today we are going through some of the most serious economic, economic, social and political crises in the world.”
“As a result, about 85% of Lebanese are now living below the poverty line. One-third of the Lebanese population is now displaced and living in poverty, 11 years after the start of the Syrian crisis, and Lebanon does not have the capacity to bear all this burden, especially in the current context.
“Lebanon now relies on you to help us maintain security, economic and social stability,” he added.
“The Lebanese Crisis Response Plan brings together more than 126 partners to help the 3.2 million people living in Lebanon. It aims to support 1.5 million Lebanese, 1.5 million displaced Syrians and more than 209,000 Palestinian refugees, ”said the Ministry of Social Affairs. Results of the host population and displaced persons.
He added that people across Lebanon were sinking further into poverty due to currency devaluation, high inflation, inflation and loss of income. Defects in the supply chain, including fuel, wheat and electricity, continue to affect the working environment of Lebanese Crisis Response Plan participants as they face simultaneous increased pressure from local authorities and communities to provide assistance in the face of increasing demand.
“Nine out of ten Syrians in Lebanon are living in poverty,” said Najat Rochdi, Lebanon’s humanitarian coordinator.
She noted that the level of poverty among Lebanese, immigrants and Palestinians has increased significantly. These circumstances force families to send their children to work, avoid food and become indebted instead of enrolling them in school.
Representing the donor countries, the Canadian Ambassador to Lebanon, Chantal Chassett, said: “The Brussels conference promised about $ 4.1 billion to Syrian refugees.”
She reaffirmed her commitment to a political solution to the Syrian crisis, emphasized the recovery process within Syria, and promised to support the host countries and help Lebanon cope with the long-term displacement through development and funding.
This text is a translation of an article published on Arabnews.com
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