The Association of Banks in Lebanon responded on Wednesday to the President of the Republic, believing that the latter is leading a campaign against the banking sector, with the objective of concealing “the reasons for what happened and what is still happening. in the country”.
Yesterday, the President of the Republic attacked the Minister of Finance and the Governor of the Banque du Liban as well as local banks head on, accusing them of having no will to carry out the forensic audit procedure.
The President of the Republic thus began by recalling the various steps taken by certain parties to avoid this audit of the central bank. He also recalled that this procedure is not only a personal request of the Head of State but also of the international community, a prerequisite for the release of funds from CEDRE and the IMF.
At the central bank, you take primary responsibility for violating the monetary and credit law, and you should have organized the banking work and taken steps to protect people’s money in the banks and enforce the coverage standards. and liquidity.
For the banks, your responsibility is clear and you cannot escape the truth.
People have entrusted their money to you, and you have spent the irresponsibility of greed for quick profit and without ′ ′ risk distribution ′ ′ to the demands of the profession.
The ABL press release
The ABL press release
“Members of the association hated the campaign the banking industry is facing, which has become like Othman’s shirt. Most politicians resort to it when the crisis escalates because they think that what they are doing, they consider that they are presenting what is essential to show the truth and find out the causes of what has happened and what is happening. happening in the country.
Perhaps there are some facts that have been overlooked by those looking into the industry, or they may be deliberately forgetting some facts that we think need to be remembered:
1- It is not the banks which have intended, in each ministerial declaration for nearly thirty years to date, to assert the fixing of the national currency.
2- It was not the banks which urged the State to borrow on the money deposited at the central bank.
3- It was not the banks that issued the decisions and laws for cash advances that we have never seen revert to the central account.
4- It is not the banks that have set the frameworks for subsidies or spending in the energy sector, as in other sectors.
5- It was not the banks that hindered and obstructed the publication of laws on capital control. It has not decided to issue Eurobonds either.
6- Thanks to the banks, the State was able to ensure the salaries of all categories of the public sector.
7 – Banks are the party that annually paid the highest percentage of tax collection for the benefit of the public treasury.
8- It is the banks that have preserved Lebanon’s presence and its international reputation. It is strange that politicians are trying to call on the world to boycott and besiege Lebanese banks, as if they are trying to cut the artery of financial communication between Lebanon and the world, which poses a real danger to Lebanon. the interests of Lebanon and the Lebanese. , and in whose interest?
9- It was not the banks that set waste management policies and approved irresponsible tax and customs policies, nor were they the ones who made random employment decisions in the state, nor those who have accumulated the deficit of the balance of payments, nor the one who refused the economic vision of the State and good planning.
10- It was not the banks that organized, managed and benefited from the massive smuggling of subsidized goods to the detriment of the small number of needy citizens.
Putting the burden of collapse on the banks is a pure ransom. Residents and expats have enjoyed the benefits they have received by investing money in treasury bills, knowing that bank reserves have always met international accounting standards and their profits have approached 10% of their equity, which remains the lowest percentage in the Arab region, does not exceed 1% of assets.
For your information, the net funds distributed to shareholders represented between 3% and 5% of the value of their contributions, which is less than what ordinary depositors receive.
Banks have been a catalyst for the economy in its real estate, commercial and industrial sectors, through housing and personal loans, and commercial and industrial loans that often exceeded the capital of these same companies, not to mention loans from individuals. educational and academic and social institutions, noting that the banks which are currently exposed to a smear campaign He has never abandoned his national role, as he re-used most of his legitimate profits in the Lebanese economic cycle.
The banks are committed to respecting and still respect the right of depositors to obtain their savings, and they confirm that once the government returns the borrowed funds to the central bank, they will be able to return the rights directly. to their owners. However, this requires the formation of a scientifically homogeneous government that establishes a rational and achievable plan that will serve as a basis for negotiations with the International Monetary Fund and allow the liberalization of aid and investment, noting that this remains one axioms of the duty of political authority. In short, the political crisis, along with the disruption and vacuum it has caused, remains the main cause of the financial and banking crisis in Lebanon.
Media and Public Relations Department