Mideast IMF chief says Lebanon needs comprehensive reform program

Mideast IMF chief says Lebanon needs comprehensive reform program
Riot police stand guard as anti-government protesters in Beirut chant slogans against the political leadership they blame for the economic and financial crisis. (AP)
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Updated 10 June 2021

Mideast IMF chief says Lebanon needs comprehensive reform program

Mideast IMF chief says Lebanon needs comprehensive reform program
  • The IMF’s dialogue with Lebanon has been on hold since its government resigned last August in the wake of a massive explosion at the port of Beirut

DUBAI: Lebanon must learn the lessons of the past in developing a comprehensive reform program, said a top IMF official.
It comes amid a deepening economic crisis reckoned to be the worst in its modern history.
The IMF’s dialogue with Lebanon has been on hold since its government resigned last August in the wake of a massive explosion at the port of Beirut which killed more than 200 people and left 6,000 homeless.
“Unfortunately after the explosion last year in August the government resigned and we are waiting for a new one to be formed,” Jihad Azour, IMF regional director said in an interview with Bloomberg TV on Thursday.
“We look forward as soon as the government is formed to re-engage to see how we could help Lebanon help address a challenging situation bit also build on the capacity of Lebanon to bounce back. What Lebanon needs is a comprehensive reform program — It requires a different kind of policy mix both on the fiscal and monetary front. There are a certain amount of lessons from the past that need to be taken into consideration going forward. This cannot be done without strong support from the international community.”
The Lebanese pound, which has been pegged to the US dollar at 1,515 for more than 20 years, has collapsed since 2019, losing more than 85 percent of its value against the greenback and fueling rampant inflation in the country. That led banks to introduce capital controls and obstruct depositors from accessing their dollar accounts which in turn has fueled even more public anger.
The World Bank said earlier this month that Lebanon’s crisis was among the world’s worst.


Saudi imports from UAE jump back up in August

Saudi imports from UAE jump back up in August
Getty Images
Updated 9 sec ago

Saudi imports from UAE jump back up in August

Saudi imports from UAE jump back up in August
  • On an annual basis, UAE imports increased by about 47 percent

The value of Saudi Arabia's imports from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in August increased by about 31 percent month on month, official data showed on Monday, jumping back from a steep decline in July after the kingdom imposed new rules on imports from other Gulf countries.


Imports from neighbouring UAE rose to 4.1 billion riyals ($1.09 billion) from 3.1 billion riyals in July, according to data from the General Authority for Statistics.

On an annual basis, UAE imports increased by about 47 percent.


The monthly increase follows a 33 percent decline in July, when Saudi Arabia amended rules on imports from other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries to exclude goods made in free zones or using Israeli input from preferential tariff concessions, a move seen as a challenge the UAE's status as the region's trade and business hub.


Aramco and TotalEnergies launch first two service stations in Saudi Arabia

Aramco and TotalEnergies launch first two service stations in Saudi Arabia
Updated 6 min 51 sec ago

Aramco and TotalEnergies launch first two service stations in Saudi Arabia

Aramco and TotalEnergies launch first two service stations in Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: Saudi Aramco and TotalEnergies have launched the first two service stations of their joint retail network in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia’s capital, and Saihat, in the country’s Eastern Province.

"It follows the signing of a 50:50 Joint Venture (JV) Agreement between Aramco and TotalEnergies in 2019, with plans to  significantly upgrade a network of 270 service stations and expand the range of quality retail services available across the Kingdom," Aramco said in a statement.

 


Saudi mining company, Maaden, turns into profit in first 9 months of 2021

Saudi mining company, Maaden, turns into profit in first 9 months of 2021
Updated 44 min 1 sec ago

Saudi mining company, Maaden, turns into profit in first 9 months of 2021

Saudi mining company, Maaden, turns into profit in first 9 months of 2021

RIYADH: Saudi Arabian Mining Co. (Maaden) has reported a net profit of SR3.1 billion ($826 million) in the first nine months of 2021, compared to a net loss of SR780 million a year ago, it said in a filing. 


Softbank Vision Fund, Mubadala invest in European mobility company TIER

Softbank Vision Fund, Mubadala invest in European mobility company TIER
Updated 53 min 31 sec ago

Softbank Vision Fund, Mubadala invest in European mobility company TIER

Softbank Vision Fund, Mubadala invest in European mobility company TIER

DUBAI: TIER, Europe’s micro-mobility company, announced the first close of its $200 million Series D funding round led by previous investors SoftBank Vision Fund 2, Mubadala Capital and adds new partners like M&G Investments, a green impact fund, and Mountain Partners, a diversified global investment holding.

The company, which entered the UAE market in 2020 after being selected as a leading service provider by the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA), said in a statement that the funding provides TIER with additional resources to fulfil its mission to "change mobility for good by providing the safest, most equitable and sustainable mobility solution in the market."


Telecom Zain KSA profits drop 36% for first 9 months of 2021

Telecom Zain KSA profits drop 36% for first 9 months of 2021
Updated 25 October 2021

Telecom Zain KSA profits drop 36% for first 9 months of 2021

Telecom Zain KSA profits drop 36% for first 9 months of 2021
  • The decline is due to a 1 percent drop in revenue, as well as rising revenue costs by 19 percent, the company said in a bourse filing. 

DUBAI: Saudi telecom firm Zain KSA posted a net profit of SR143 million ($38.1 million) in the first nine months of 2021, a 36 percent drop from the same period last year. 

The decline is due to a 1 percent drop in revenue, as well as rising revenue costs by 19 percent, the company said in a bourse filing. 

Lowering operating expenses and the results of the capital restructuring last year helped compensate for the fall, it added.