- Title: Lebanon's economic hardship reflects on people's daily lives
- Date: 16th July 2020
- Summary: DORA, LEBANON (JULY 16, 2020) (REUTERS) WOMAN SIFTING THROUGH GARBAGE MAN BEGGING ON THE SIDE OF THE STREET TRAFFIC ON HIGHWAY BEIRUT, LEBANON (JULY 16, 2020) (REUTERS) WOMEN HOLDING CHILD WITH ANOTHER CHILD NEXT TO HER SITTING ON THE SIDE OF THE STREET DORA, LEBANON (JULY 16, 2020) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) FATHER OF TWO, SARKIS BAKALIAN, SAYING: "Honestly, in 1975 we had a fifteen-year-old war and we didn't witness what we are seeing today. Yes, there was war, but you could find everything, the economical situation wasn't like it is now, every region had its money and influence, now the economical situation is miserable, and it affected us heavily." VARIOUS OF STREET WITH ELECTRICITY CABLES HANGING ON BUILDING WALL (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) FATHER OF TWO, SARKIS BAKALIAN, SAYING: "My sadness from this current economical situation caused me sickness, I got a small stroke here (indicating his face), that's why I am seeing a physiotherapist." VARIOUS OF PEOPLE WALKING ON STREET WITH SHOPS ON THE SIDE MAN WITHDRAWING FROM ATM SURROUNDED BY STEEL BARRIER PEOPLE WAITING OUTSIDE BANK MARKET OWNER SITTING ON COUNTER WEARING FACE MASK CUSTOMER INSIDE MARKET (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) MARKET OWNER, KHALIL HABCHE, SAYING: "The dollar (referring to the rise in U.S. Dollar to Lebanese Pound rate) hasn't left us anything, it consumed the stock, the profit and the capital." JOURNALIST ASKING: 'Do you feel that people are buying less?' KHALIL HABCHE SAYING: "Yes naturally, they now ask me how much the bread costs, how much is the sugar and rice for, before buying them." VARIOUS OF WATER GALLONS / BREAD AND ITEMS INSIDE MARKET (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) MARKET OWNER, KHALIL HABCHE, SAYING: "And the situation will be total destruction if it continues like that. Now we are in total destruction." BEIRUT, LEBANON (JULY 16, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE WALKING IN POPULAR MARKET WITH CARTS AND GOODS ON DISPLAY
- Embargoed: 30th July 2020 13:06
- Keywords: Lebanon crisis economic hardship economy finances poverty society
- Location: DORA, BEIRUT AND BEIRUT SUBURBS, LEBANON
- City: DORA, BEIRUT AND BEIRUT SUBURBS, LEBANON
- Country: Lebanon
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA001CN282FB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:With Lebanon's economy in ruins, citizens are struggling with soaring prices, job losses and hunger. The financial meltdown is even threatening the health of people, one Lebanese citizen said.
"My sadness from this current economical situation caused me sickness, I got a small stroke," Sarkis Bakalian, a father of four, described.
Lebanon is in the throes of an acute financial crisis seen as the worst threat to its stability since the 1975-90 civil war. The crisis is rooted in decades of state corruption and bad governance by the sectarian ruling elite.
People are only shopping for what they really need and ask for all items' prices before buying them, said one market owner in Dora, Khalil Habche.
The Lebanese pound has fallen by nearly 80% since late last year, driving up prices in the import-dependent economy, slashing jobs and pushing many into poverty.
The government raised late last month the price of a 900-gramme loaf of partially subsidised bread to 2,000 pounds from its pre-October-crisis price of 1,500 pounds in the first such price change in eight years.
The World Bank warned last November that the proportion of Lebanese living in poverty could rise to 50% if conditions worsened. Since then the crisis has only deepened and the economy has been further hit by a COVID-19 lockdown.
(Production: Imad Creidi, Issam Abdallah, Mohamed Azakir, Yara Abi Nader)
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