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Lebanon: Salameh Says New Circular to Reduce Pressure on Dollar Demand

Lebanon: Salameh Says New Circular to Reduce Pressure on Dollar Demand

Monday, 30 September, 2019 - 07:45
FILE PHOTO: Lebanon's Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh speaks during an interview with Reuters in Beirut.

Lebanon's Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh said on Monday that a circular is set to be issued on Tuesday to reduce the pressure on US dollar demand at currency exchange offices.

Salameh's announcement came after a meeting he held with President Michel Aoun.

He said the central bank was securing the foreign currency needs of the private and public sectors and would "continue in that according to the fixed prices that will be announced without any change," Reuters reported.

The circular will organize "securing dollars for the banks at the official rate declared by the central bank to secure imports of petrol, medicine and flour", Salameh said.

The Lebanese pound has been pegged at the rate of 1,507.5 to the dollar for more than two decades.

On Sunday, protesters took to the streets in demonstrations against the deteriorating conditions and the economic and financial crisis.

Tires were set ablaze on several major roads in Beirut, paralyzing the capital.

“We went down to demand to live with dignity. We want to say to the MPs, the ministers, and all the ruling class that if they don’t want to give back what they stole, they should at least stop stealing so the people can live,” one protester in Beirut said, attacking Lebanese leaders over state corruption, according to Reuters.

Lebanon won pledges of $11 billion to finance a major investment program to revive the economy at a Paris conference last year, however, donors first want to see the state implement reforms to put the public finances on a sustainable path.

Funds pledged at that have yet to be released.

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