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Value of Lebanese pound drops to all-time low


The black market rate, widely used across the country, now sits at 35,600 to the US dollar.


Beirut, Lebanon – The black market value of the Lebanese pound has fallen to an all-time low of 35,600 against the US dollar, a drop from 26,800 in the space of just two weeks, and a sign that Lebanon’s economic crisis is set to continue to cripple the country.

The exchange rate is unofficial, but is the one primarily used across Lebanon.

The depreciation of the Lebanese pound has caused a ripple effect, causing even more economic difficulties for the country.

Petrol prices in three weeks surged by almost 25 percent, while the government is expected to soon further roll back medicine subsidies and increase their prices.

Meanwhile, Lebanese authorities continue to implement temporary measures to alleviate wheat shortages.

This rapid unravelling, just 10 days after cash-strapped Lebanon elected a new parliament, comes after a few months of relative calm for the fragile currency, which has lost 90 percent of its value in less than three years.

The authorities primarily blame global inflation, and the effect of Russia’s war in Ukraine on international wheat and fuel prices. However, experts say domestic reasons play a large role in creating the economic conditions that currently exist in Lebanon.

“When global prices change, Lebanon is not hit once, but twice,” financial adviser Michel Kozah told Al Jazeera. “It’s because we cannot protect the value of the Lebanese pound.”

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