You’d expect a black market to be terrible, but in Lebanon it is necessary for survival. The black market is the only way most people in the country can swap the devalued Lebanese pound (LBP) for increasingly scarce US dollars. Years of government corruption and economic mismanagement finally caught up with Lebanon as its sovereign debt became unmanageable , leading to mass civil unrest and $1.2Bn of defaults earlier this year. The heavy demand for USD comes as most stores have now stopped trading in LBP. Although the LBP is officially pegged to the dollar at 1500 pounds per $1. In reality the pound has lost more than 50% of its value, leaving many businesses unable to afford imports and have been left with no option but to shut their stores.

How can Lebanon re-ignite its investor appetite in the country? discuss…

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