Probe Ordered in Alleged Eurobond Operations Involving Lebanese Banks


Justice Minister Marie-Claude Najm on Tuesday asked State Prosecutor Ghassan Oueidat to request information from the central bank’s Special Investigation Commission on alleged Eurobond operations involving some Lebanese banks and global financial firms.

The National News Agency said Najm's move follows “media reports that some Lebanese banks have placed their bonds under the name of some foreign institutions to pressure the State to pay the debt.”

Lebanon has the world's third-highest debt to GDP ratio and has been sliding towards default in recent months, with tight capital controls and a currency devaluation already hitting purchasing power.

Lebanon is expected to decide soon whether to pay $1.2 billion in Eurobonds that reach maturity on March 9 or to default on its debt.

The country has requested help from the International Monetary Fund to assess the measures needed to rebuild the economy, but has not yet asked for financial assistance.

An IMF delegation is due to start talks with top Lebanese officials on Thursday.

Comments 4
Thumb ashtah 18 February 2020, 21:26

Lebanese Sovereign Debt distribution was 20% Foreign 80% Local. When the Banks got wind of the government intending to pay its debt in dollars to Foreign holders, shady swaps took place and now the mix is 80 Foreign and 20 Local.

Thumb s.o.s 18 February 2020, 23:25

This is so despicable considering they sent abroad around 27 billion dollars by mid 2019 because they knew very well it was gonna get ugly. But this money includes our savings !

Thumb enterprise 19 February 2020, 06:58

Why doesn't the aouni injustice minister open a probe into the $42 billion waste in the electricity file that her party has been managing for the last 10 years?

Thumb doodle-dude 19 February 2020, 07:01

lol @ 'probe' by Marie-Claude Najm