Citibank: a favorable report for Lebanon
According to a report recently published by Salomon Smith Barney (Citibank Group) on the Lebanese economy, the government is still able to service its debts.
The following factors confirm this: the amount of the Central Bank’s reserves, which exceed external debt; the strength of the banking sector, which has a high level of liquidity and the assets of Lebanese abroad.
Moreover, the current monetary policy adopted enables the government to control inflation and to strengthen the Lebanese pound.
According to this report as well, Lebanon has an irrefutable asset: skilled human resources with a literacy rate of 90 percent, comparable to Europe.
Additionally, the Lebanese government has always settled its debts even in the most difficult circumstances.
Finally, the report forecasts that Arab tourism and investments in Lebanon should benefit from the increase in oil prices. Consequently the report gives a rating of BB to Lebanon’s country risk. — ( Banque Libano-Française Sal )