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Lebanon will not be able to pay salaries by end of June: Prime Minister

June 13, 2023 at 8:26 pm

Prime Minister of Lebanon Najib Mikati speaks during a press conference on shifting summer time at the Grand Serail in Beirut, Lebanon on March 27, 2023 [Hussam Shbaro/Anadolu Agency]

Lebanon’s caretaker Prime Minister, Najib Mikati, said Tuesday that his government will not be able to pay salaries to civil servants by the end of June, Anadolu Agency reports.

“The government will not be able to pay salaries if Parliament does not approve additional appropriations for wages,” Mikati said in a statement following a Cabinet meeting.

Forty-six members in the 128-seat House of Representatives oppose holding a session for the assembly, amid failure to elect a new president since the end of Michel Aoun’s term last October.

Under the Constitution, the president is the only one who has the authority to demand holding a parliamentary session.

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Lebanon has been unable to elect a successor to Aoun, amid differences among political rivals.

In April, the government approved a decision to raise public sector salaries, in addition to hiking the transportation allowance for employees.

The currency has collapsed against the dollar from 1,506 liras at the end of 2019 to about 95,000 liras during the current year.

The annual inflation rate climbed in Lebanon to 269 per cent in April, the world’s highest, according to the World Bank.

Lebanon has been facing a crippling economic crisis since 2019, which, according to the World Bank, is one of the worst the world has seen in modern times.

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