Secretary General of Lebanese Banking Association Warns of Growing Lack of Liquidity in Banks
The general secretary of the Lebanese Banks Association reported that “there is no liquidity in the banks, whether in terms of their deposits in local dollars at the Banque du Liban or in terms of their negative balances in foreign banks.”
Khalaf said: “Bank investments are divided, for the most part, into 4 categories: bank deposits in the Banque du Liban, which amounted to approximately $86.6 billion in mid-February, according to the Banque du Liban budget, in addition to bank deposits in correspondent banks. , which amounted to a negative balance of 204 million dollars as of January 31, 2023. Since the liabilities of Lebanese banks to correspondent banks amounted to 4.369 million dollars, and their deposits amounted to 4.165 million dollars.
He added: “Portfolio of Eurobonds, for which the state announced the termination of payments since March 2020, and its value after deducting reserves was $2.900 billion, in addition to bank loans to the private sector in foreign currency, which decreased to $9.785 billion as of 01/31/2023.”
Khalaf stressed that these figures “show beyond any doubt that there is no liquidity in the banks, whether in terms of their deposits in local dollars at the Banque du Liban, which are not subject to cash withdrawals or transfers abroad, or in terms of their negative balances. in foreign banks or in terms of their Eurobond portfolio.” Illiquid except for about 6 percent of the original price.
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