Following the Baabda meeting yesterday, the Ministry of Energy and Water released the new fuel prices this morning which show a canister of gasoline reaching 132,000 LBP.
President Michel Aoun, Caretaker Prime Minister Hassan Diab, Caretaker Minister of Finance Ghazi Wazni, Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh, and Caretaker Minister of Energy and Water Raymond Ghajar met on Saturday in Baabda to propose (short-term) solutions for the fuel crisis.
The attendees agreed that a temporary account worth $225 million would be open to cover subsidies for fuel until the end of September. They also announced that the Ministry of Energy would now price fuel according to the 8,000 LBP/Dollar exchange rate.
This led to a significant increase from 77,500 LBP which was the price of one gasoline canister yesterday as was shown in the fuel schedule issued today.
The new prices of fuel are as follows:
– One canister (20 Liters) of 98-octane gasoline: LBP 133,200
– One canister (20 Liters) of 95-octane gasoline: LBP 129,000
– 20 liters of diesel oil: LBP 101,500
– One cylinder of cooking gas: LBP 90,400
Fadi Abu Shakra, the representative of fuel distributers in Lebanon, said that two ships carrying fuel are waiting for the Central Bank’s approval to unload their shipments and that the current fuel supply will likely run out today.
The fuel shortage in Lebanon has forced people to wait in endless agonizing queue lines to get gasoline which got even longer this week when Coral announced the shutdown of its stations across the country. It is unlikely that the increase in prices will make those lines any shorter except if people become unable to afford them.
Hospitals, factories, and restaurants have shut down after they were unable to find fuel to power their generators amidst the absence of electricity provided by EDL.