As Lebanon’s Crisis Deepens, Lines for Fuel Grow, and Food and Medicine Are Scarce

The New York Times (NYT) (07/05/2021)
  • According to the World Bank, Lebanon’s economic crisis could rank among the top-3 worst since the mid-1800s given its impact on living standards.
  • The Lebanese pound has declined by 90% since 2019 and GDP plummeted 40% to $33B last year.
  • While this scale of decline usually derives from war/conflict, Lebanon’s crisis was caused by massive government overspending/debt exacerbated by the Covid pandemic and 2020 Beirut port explosion.
  • The fractured government’s “whack-a-mole” solutions (eg subsidizing fuel, medicine, food) have been largely ineffective.