Five Arab countries suffer from the collapse of the value of their currency

The inhabitants of five Arab countries (Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen and Sudan) are under the influence of a gradual deterioration of the local currency against the dollar, which contributes to high commodity prices and threatens to starve and crush the poor classes.

While Iraq and Sudan are trying to control the exchange rate of the dollar, without changing this from the poor living reality that has been affected of course, Yemen and Syria seem threatened by famine, while Lebanon continues to collapse due to popular protests.

The dollar exchange rate reached 10 thousand Lebanese pounds to one dollar. On Tuesday, the Syrian pound recorded a new record deterioration in its value in the parallel market, reaching a threshold of 4 thousand against the dollar in a country where the conflict this month enters its tenth year.

The majority of Syrians today live below the poverty line, according to the United Nations, while the prices of goods across the country have doubled over the past year. 12.4 million people suffer from food insecurity, according to the World Food Program.

In Yemen, Yemeni Prime Minister Maeen Abdulmalik warned yesterday that the continued collapse of his country's currency heralded the occurrence of "famine".

Abdul-Malik reviewed, during a telephone conversation with the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, "the difficult economic and humanitarian conditions in Yemen, and the urgent needs required to support the economy and stabilize the national currency." And he warned that the continued collapse of the currency heralded a "famine", which should be promptly remedied.

In Iraq, the federal government decided at the end of 2020 to raise the value of the dollar against the Iraqi dinar from 1200 dinars per dollar, to 1450, to cover the deficit in the 2021 budget that has not yet been approved.

The government decision - from the Central Bank in particular - contributed to high prices, especially food, as Iraq relies on imports to secure its goods. This left a noticeable disturbance in the level of food security in Iraq. While the government and the supervisory authorities announced accountability for price manipulators, however, on the ground, the Iraqi citizen does not touch any actual measures.

In Sudan, the Sudanese currency has been stabilized during the last two weeks at 376 pounds due to the policy of floating the pound recently carried out by the transitional authority after the exchange rate of the dollar deteriorated in a frightening way during the past six months from 150 pounds in August and continued to rise until it reached 420 pounds. In the month of January, which led to a crazy rise in the prices of consumer goods, which was reflected in the lives of citizens and led to many demonstrations due to high inflation, which drove most Sudanese families out of the circle of economic safety due to the inability to purchase the basics of life.

 

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