BEIRUT: Lebanon’s merchants and traders are contemplating not paying the value added tax in November in order to press politicians to speed up the formation of a Cabinet, a body of merchants warned Thursday.
Head of the Beirut Merchant Association Nicolas Chammas said following a meeting of the body that the business community was seriously considering staging what it called a “civil disobedience” campaign.
“One of the measures we may take in the future is to urge the merchants not to pay the value added tax which is due in November,” Chammas said, speaking on behalf of the group.
“We are considering this action because the political class has abandoned its citizens and scrapped a social contract with them,” a statement by the merchants said.
The group also hailed the successful strike staged by all the business and bank associations on Sept. 4.
The Economic Committees, Lebanon’s leading business association, organized a general strike last month over the deteriorating economic situation.
The group has threatened escalatory measures if a new Cabinet is not formed to deal with pressing concerns, noting that the absence of a Cabinet could further hurt the already troubled Lebanese economy.