Former Economy Minister Alain Hakim on Monday cautioned that the once-secure middle class in Lebanon is being hit hard and will become wiped out as the poverty rate rises, noting that it is one of the reasons behind the October 17 uprising.
In an interview with Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, Hakim warned of the eradication of the middle class in Lebanon as a result of inflation, unemployment, economic recession and decline in purchasing power by reason of high living costs.
“The consumer expenditure plunged as prices soared by 55% owing to the Parliament’s tax hike on October 9, 2019; in addition to the introduced hike value-added tax from 10 to 11 percent,” he indicated.
In a different context, Hakim voiced an outcry over Lebanon's failure to suspend Iran flights to the country amid fears of the novel Coronavirus spread.
“Why is the authority insisting on welcoming flights from Iran to Lebanon or from any other country where cases of Coronavirus are found?” he questioned on Twitter.
“Why let Lebanon endure more burdens whether by the cost of health treatments, own management or by precarious risks on the airport’s security team who would directly be in contact with infected people?” he added.