the second time that the country remains in the dark. To cause the stop, the lack of fuel and the economic crisis. The light will not return until Monday
Lebanon in the dark. From today until noon – due to fuel shortages – the Lebanese electricity grid has stopped working and is unlikely to restart until Monday. To confirm the news was a Lebanese official a Reuters who explained that a resumption of supply is not expected in the short term.
At the moment there are two power plants that have stopped working and it is the largest ones in the country that have stopped: that of Zahrani and that of Deir Ammar in blackout since yesterday. Again according to the official quoted by Reuters
the state-owned power company is said to be trying to run the plants with army fuel reserves but the process takes time.
The blockade was caused by the very heavy economic crisis that hit the country and which led to a 90% collapse of the local currency and a general shortage of fuel. The import of diesel fuel guaranteed by the Treasury advances paid by the Bank of Lebanon. But the latter is delaying the opening of credit lines to finance the fuel supply to save its meager dollar reserves. The situation forced the national electricity company, lectricit du Liban, the public body responsible for the supply of electricity, to heavily ration its production. Edl can barely produce 700 megawatts (MW), or between two and three hours of electricity per day.
Faced with state rationing, private power generators, already in use for some time in the country, which mostly run on diesel, have become increasingly expensive. According to the World Bank, in 2018, daily rationing ranged from three to eleven hours, with significant disparities between one region and another. The problem affects not only private individuals, but also, and very hard, companies, restaurateurs and hospitals. Another blackout hit the country in July – also causing the vaccination campaign to be suspended –
The government – now chaired by Najib Mikati – officially decreed a financial default in March 2020. The banking system failed, effectively imposing capital controls on small and medium-sized savers, cut off from their heavy currency current accounts. The local lira has lost 92% of its value against the dollar in almost two years since the crisis broke out. The purchasing power of public workers, paid in Lebanese pounds, collapsed: a salary that in 2019 was worth about a thousand dollars in Lebanese pounds, today is worth 80 dollars. Prices of commodities and consumer goods have skyrocketed, rising 120% according to May data. The UN states that more than half of the population lives below the poverty line and that a third of minors go to bed without food. Added to this is the absence of electricity, in a country already on its knees from the explosion at the port of Beirut over a year ago.
October 9, 2021 (change October 9, 2021 | 17:47)
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