Lebanese Prez urges Int’l Support Group for financial assistance

Beirut, April 6 (IANS) Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Monday urged the International Support Group (ISG) for the country to financially support its reforms program.

“We will need urgent financial help to support our vital sectors including banks, electricity, water, transport and others. We rely heavily on the financial support of $11 billion pledged by CEDRE which will be invested in infrastructure projects,” Aoun said during a meeting with ISG.
Aoun gave an economic overview by saying that Lebanon suffers from serious shortage in foreign reserves, an increase in unemployment and poverty rates, and an unprecedented increase in prices with the devaluation of the Lebanese pound in the parallel market in addition to public deficit caused by the drop in tax revenues, reports Xinhua news agency.
He added that the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated Lebanon’s financial distress not to forget the big burden imposed by the huge number of refugees residing in the country and the fear of witnessing a spread of the virus among them.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Hassan Diab said that his cabinet has worked on a comprehensive plan aimed at saving the country from its current crises and the strategy will be ready very soon.
The ISG for Lebanon was launched in September 2013 by the UN and former President Michel Suleiman in order to mobilize support and assistance.
The group includes the US, Russia, China, France, UK, Germany, Italy, the UN, the European Union as well as the League of Arab States.