Al-Akhbar wrote: The message President Michel Aoun wanted to convey to the governor of the Banque du Liban, Riad Salameh, can be summed up as follows: “No cancellation of subsidies” for medicine, fuel, wheat and baskets food. To this end, they met yesterday at Baabda Palace, after which a brief statement was issued stating that the President had discussed with Salameh “the issue of supporting the basic and necessary materials and the measures that lead to the continuation of this support under current circumstances. ”
As far as the President of the Republic is concerned, the situation does not allow for the removal of subsidies at present, as it will cause a social problem, according to the information. However, the meeting between Aoun and Salameh did not discuss the new mechanisms that will be adopted, and it was not decided where the cost of support would be funded, given that the issue of reducing the percentage is not “mandatory contingency”. “resolved or not, with the reluctance of the members of the Central Council of the Banque du Liban, with the support of large bank owners and depositors, For this option. The debate between the President and the Governor of the Banque du Liban remained in the overall framework, about the need to take measures to reduce the number of subsidized foods, and to reduce the percentage of beneficiaries of fuel subsidies, so that those who do not qualify will benefit of it.
In this context, general “ideas” began to circulate about directing the subsidy, so that its cost per year would reach one billion and 300 million dollars limits, and cards were issued (not resolved whether they were supplies or financing) to more than 500 thousand families who had become impoverished. The problem is that the data required to implement the “subsidized card” and start working with it has not yet been prepared, and this issue may take months, given the absence of criteria that the ” the poorest “are defined on their basis, and lack the necessary number of workers to perform the task. Early next week, there will be meetings between government agencies, economists and members of the Banque du Liban Central Council to try to agree a new support mechanism, subject to the matter being decided at Wednesday’s Central Council meeting .
This “ambiguity” over the issue of support also applies to the government file, as long as the then-Prime Minister Saad Hariri insists he is a “hostage” … hostage to the red lines set for him by the United States of America. In this context, Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary-General Sheikh Naim Qassem said Hariri’s move “by naming whoever is wanted and inadequate communication with some blocs, and America’s pressure position on Lebanon in many forms, caused the delay in formation ‘ government. ” Qassem added in an interview with “Al-Manar” channel that the answer is “the agility to form the government and bring long distances closer … the luxury of time is not in anyone’s interest, and some are waiting for the new president of America to accept his duties so that the government is in harmony with the American ideals. ” The government invited a caretaker to “permanent meetings to solve people’s problems in the absence of the new government, and this is what the constitution allows.” Why not accuse Hezbollah of being a “problem” in not forming a government? Qassem replied that there was no problem with or from the “party”, since “the basis is an understanding between the two presidents to be created. The best way to form a government is a dialogue between the designated president and the representative blocs, so that the government can build confidence in the House of Representatives Approving the parliamentary blocks is a prerequisite for forming the government, and this is what the American must understand. He claimed that al-Qaeda, to solve our a problem in Lebanon, “is to defend ourselves and work for Lebanon’s sake first, and the Americans are not intimidated.” With regard to the French initiative, Qassem explained that “its origins are economic and we agree with that in principle, but we never accept being bullied by this initiative, ”reiterating Hezbollah’s stance of refusing” any conditional aid, and we receive assistance from the International Monetary Fund after negotiating because we were told in Our country ».