Lebanon’s parliament will vote next week on a 2020 budget that projects a deficit of seven percent of gross domestic product (GDP), the head of parliament’s finance and budget commission said on Friday — far larger than the 0.6 percent originally planned, as multiple crises batter the country’s finances.
Ibrahim Kanaan, a senior MP, said the 2020 budget marked “the start of the rescue plan”.
Parliament is due to convene on Monday to debate the law, which was first drafted by the Saad Hariri-led government that quit in October.
But uncertainty makes it difficult to project revenues.
“Revenues were reduced very substantially,” Kanaan said. “Now we are coming back from this story, it needs time to see and assess clearly what kind of figure we can aim for.”
The budget law includes raising a state guarantee on bank deposits to 75 million Lebanese pounds – around $50,000 at the official exchange rate – from five million pounds.