The draft budget that caretaker Finance Minister Ghazi Wazni submitted in January is supposed to be the first step toward economic reforms. One interesting part of it is a proposal for the state to generate revenue from “special-number” passports.
The961 secured a copy of the 2021 draft budget, which includes a new measure that introduces fees for passports with special numbers. The new fees aim at increasing the Lebanese treasury’s revenues.
According to the proposal, applying for or renewing a “first-class” Lebanese passport that has a special number and a 5-year validity would cost LBP 1 million.
Additionally, a second-class and a third-class passport with the same validity would cost LBP 750,000 and LBP 500,000 respectively.
As for regular passports, they would cost:
LBP 60,000 for 1 year
LBP 200,000 for 3 years
LBP 300,000 for 5 years
500,000 for 10 years
As per the proposal, the Director-General of General Security would be responsible for determining the criteria whereby passports are classified.
Needless to say, the draft budget is not final, and it is still under review, which means it remains subject to modifications.
It’s worth noting that the proposed budget estimates that total expenses for 2021 will be LBP 19.76 trillion, while total revenues will amount to LBP 13.57 trillion, leaving a projected fiscal deficit of LBP 6.19 trillion.