Hariri and Berri speak at the beginning of a session at the Parliament in Beirut, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017. (The Daily Star/Ali Fawaz, HO)
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The Constitutional Council decision to rescind the tax hike law has put the government in an unenviable position and may force it to weigh more options to finance the salary scale for civil servants and public school teachers.This decision has prompted Prime Minister Saad Hariri to call for an emergency Cabinet meeting to discuss all options to finance the salary scale.Thanks to the taxes collected from the banks on their windfall profits generated from the Central Bank's financial engineering, the government can finance the salary scale – it will cost $800 million a year – but only for a short period of timeLawmaker Ghazi Youssef stressed that the government is obliged to give the salary increase to civil servants despite the decision of the Constitutional Council."The only ones who are elated by the decision of the Constitutional Council are the commercial banks and the owners of illegal sea properties because they have not obliged anymore to pay extra taxes to the government and this is unfair," Nahhas said.He added that now the banks will be armed with the Constitutional Council's decision and will tell the government that you have no right to increase taxes on lenders.
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