Lebanon
Lebanese demonstrators wave national flags. Political divisions have since hampered the formation of a new government despite international pressure. Image Credit: AFP

Cairo: Lebanon’s caretaker government has decided to keep state subsidies on food and medicines after street protests as the country is grappling with a tough economic crisis.

Lebanon has been suffering from severe economic hardships and a shortage of foreign currency reserves compounded by the global coronavirus pandemic.

The government led by Hassan Diab held a meeting attended by the governor of the country’s central bank Riad Salama during which they emphasised continuation of subsidies on basic food and health items “for the longest possible period”, Lebanon’s official news agency reported.

The government will work out an “integrated and detailed” plan to cut spending on oil imports and keeping subsidies, it added.

A deadly explosion at the Beirut port in August has fuelled public discontent and forced the government to resign.

Political divisions have since hampered the formation of a new government despite international pressure.