The data released by the Ministry of Finance (MoF) recently indicated that Lebanon’s gross public debt hit $99.79B in October 2021, thereby recording an annual increase of 5%.
The rise is mainly attributed to the annual increase in both local and foreign currency debt by 3.76% and 7.08%, respectively. In details, debt in local currency (denominated in LBP) stood at $61.65B in October 2021. As such, domestic debt constituted 61.78% of the total public debt.
Meanwhile, total debt denominated in foreign currency (namely in USD) reached $38.13B over the same period. In turn, total foreign debt grasped a stake of 38.22% of the total public debt by October 2021. It is worth mentioning that $7.39B represents the unpaid Eurobonds, their coupons and accrued interests, due to the default on government Eurobonds in March 2020.
Looking at net domestic debt, which excludes public sector deposits with the central bank and commercial banks, it increased by 0.13% YTD to $49.57 in October 2021.
IMF-Lebanon virtual negotiation mission ended after two weeks of talks with no final approval for a financing package as the IMF has advanced efforts to secure an aid program to help Lebanon overcome its unprecedented crisis, but more work is extremely needed. The country must enact fiscal reforms that manage its debt as well as measures to establish a credible monetary policy.
Domestic and Foreign Debt by October ($B)
Source: MoF, BLOMINVEST Bank