It’s not clear whether the Cabinet will discuss the draft budget submitted by the Finance Ministry. (The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)
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Fitch maintained Lebanon's stable outlook thanks to excess liquidity in banks and the election of a president, but warned that high public debt and weak economic performance are among the serious challenges facing the country.Fitch stressed that the passage of two crucial decrees that pave the way for offshore gas exploration is a step in the right direction.Fitch noted Parliament approved the new electoral law, followed by a salary scale adjustment, a raft of revenue measures and a long-delayed public-private partnership law.It noted that the outlook of Lebanon's fiscal consolidation remain unclear, despite the government's measures to reduce the deficit.It added that the tax measures proposed by the Finance Ministry intend also to reduce the annual budget deficit in addition to financing the salary scale.Fitch stressed that the foreign currency reserves accumulated by the Central Bank since May 2016 would enable Lebanon to weather any unforeseen financial crisis in the future.
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