Aoun Chairs Baabda Financial Meeting Boycotted by Hariri


President Michel Aoun on Friday presided over a financial meeting in Baabda aimed at discussing the deteriorating economic and financial situations in the country.

A statement issued after the meeting said the president "proposed several suggestions to resolve the crisis."

"The central bank governor has been tasked with taking the necessary temporary measures in coordination with the Association of Banks in Lebanon," the statement added.

"The conferees stressed the importance of preserving the monetary situation and Lebanon's liberal system," the statement said.

ABL chief Salim Sfeir meanwhile told reporters that there will be no official "capital control."

The meeting was attended by caretaker ministers Ali Hassan Khalil, Salim Jreissati, Mansour Bteish and Adel Afiouni, Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh, the head of the committee overseeing banks Samir Hammoud, Association of Banks chief Salim Sfeir, caretaker PM Saad Hariri’s financial advisor Nadim al-Munla and Presidency Director General Antoine Choucair.

Media reports said Hariri had been invited to the meeting but opted to boycott it.

“Hariri boycotted the financial meeting and was represented by his adviser Nadim al-Munla and Minister Adel Afiouni, because he considers that the solutions to the financial, economic and social crises begin by setting a date for the binding parliamentary consultations and forming a government whose mission would be to run the country’s affairs and resolve crises,” al-Jadeed TV said.

The meeting comes as Lebanon grapples with widespread anti-government protests since October 17, a free-falling economy, and an escalating liquidity crisis.

The dollar exchange rate in the parallel market has shot up from the pegged rate of 1,507 pounds to the greenback to around 2,250.

Fear of financial collapse caused a capital flight and some $800 million appear to have left the country from October 15 to November 7, a period during which the banks were mostly closed.

Vehicles ran out of gas Friday and were parked in the middle of the streets in protest amid an open-ended strike by the owners of gas stations.

The owners have accused the central bank and oil importers of failing to honor an agreement on allowing them to pay in Lebanese lira amid the dollar shortage in the country.

The Syndicate has staged several strikes in recent months over the same crisis.

Comments 5
Thumb ___flamethrower___ 29 November 2019, 17:01

Never has Lebanon known or seen a president as financial as this one, ever!

Missing samiam 29 November 2019, 18:46

I love the fact they are trying to make him presidential, but he doesn't do anything.

Thumb roflmfao 29 November 2019, 22:08

Dude.. Brasil nut.. mecca's too late.. the iyranian ayatollah already roubed the political powers of the cristhians in lebannon..

Thumb roflmfao 29 November 2019, 22:12

Dude.. Barsil nut.. the screaming of.. shii3a shii3a shii3ai!!!.. in the cristhians areas.. ashrafieh and 3ain el Rimeneh.. was by Hariri.. the Saudi kingdom...and have the support of usa administration!!!

Thumb Machia 30 November 2019, 03:39

Unfortunately for the Lebanese, our corrupt and inept politicians are still acting as if things were bad but salvageable.
The financial tsunami that has hit us will ten of thousands of victims whose life savings will be wiped out, who will be out of work for many years and who will rummage the trash cans for food. Our GDP will drop dramatically and the state will loose most of its revenues.
Hariri, Aoun, Berri, Joumblat, Nasrallah, Basil and their brethren in failure are unable to let go of their fiefdoms for the potential of a government that could try to salvage what little this country still has and create the very long path to recovery.
and all these factors combined will ultimately lead to the collapse of the central state, the rise of anarchy and the break up of Lebanon in mini states led and protected by either the same warlords or a new bread of thugs.