The Lebanese Central Bank stops buying the dollar through its “exchange” platform as of this date

The Central Bank of Lebanon said today, Sunday, that it will stop buying dollars through its “exchange” platform, starting October 25, until further notice.

The statement added that the bank will continue to sell dollars exclusively through its platform, according to Reuters.

Bankers said the move aims to support the Lebanese pound after it traded to a new low of over £ 40,000 per dollar last week.

The lira has lost more than 95 percent of its value since 2019, when it was valued at 1,500 before the country’s economic meltdown began.

The Lebanese financial crisis, which has lasted for three years, has pushed three quarters of the population into poverty, as food prices have risen more than 11 times, with the latest price hike in supermarkets in recent days.

Having pegged the currency for decades, the Central Bank of Lebanon currently offers multiple exchange rates, including a flexible exchange rate.

It is worth noting that Lebanese Finance Minister Youssef Al-Khalil said the state should not be “solely” responsible for paying depositors whose deposits have been frozen by the economic crisis.

Estimates indicate that the financial system in Lebanon suffers $ 72 billion in losses, but no plans have been finalized to determine how to recover these funds.

The minister told reporters: “The state cannot finance when and in any case it is asked to do so, and replenishing the deposits should not be purely out of its own pocket,” according to Reuters.

Previously, the Association of Lebanese Banks claimed that the state is responsible for spending depositors’ money.

The association added that the state is responsible for the funding gap and is obliged to compensate depositors.

The Association of Banks said the state withdrew $ 62.6 billion from the banks and it was in delay in approving the financial statements.

Lebanon’s three-year financial crisis deprived most depositors of access to their savings as banks imposed informal capital controls.

The past few weeks have seen an increasing number of depositors resort to gun-threatening banking forays in an attempt to recoup their savings.

The economic crisis that Lebanon is witnessing is considered the worst in its history: over 80% of the Lebanese population is below the poverty line and the unemployment rate has reached 30%.

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