Report: Salameh Facing 'Difficulties' to Reduce Dollar Rates
Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh is reportedly facing a "difficult" task to control the currency depreciation after a decision that banks are to conduct currency transactions to control dollar exchange rates, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Wednesday.
The daily said that Salameh is “working hard” to control the currency depreciation and decrease the exchange rate of the dollar to 10,000 Lebanese pounds or less.
The Lebanese pound is currently trading at about 11,000 to the dollar on the black market, compared with the official rate pegged at 1,507.
Last week, Salameh said during talks with caretaker finance minister Ghazi Wazni that new proposals were studied to reduce dollar rates.
The presidency also said that the Central Bank will allow local banks to conduct currency transactions similar to exchange dealers to control the exchange rate.
According to the al-Joumhouria, Salameh informed the concerned parties that his task is currently difficult because there are counter pressures pressing in the opposite direction as a result of the crisis situation the country is going through.
The rapid currency plunge -- the pound fell as far as 15,000 at one stage last week -- has reignited street protests that started in 2019 before they were temporarily snuffed out last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.