Lebanese supermarkets rely on parallel exchange rate despite benefitting from Sayrafa

News Bulletin Reports
2023-03-03 | 05:10
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Lebanese supermarkets rely on parallel exchange rate despite benefitting from Sayrafa
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2min
Lebanese supermarkets rely on parallel exchange rate despite benefitting from Sayrafa

Supermarkets in Lebanon are expected to benefit from the Sayrafa exchange rate of 10 billion Lebanese pounds per month. However, in reality, they rely on the black market exchange rate for pricing, which means they can make initial profit from the difference between the Sayrafa exchange rate, currently at 70,000 Lebanese pounds per dollar, and the parallel market exchange rate, currently at around 80,000 Lebanese pounds per dollar.

This means that the profit margin between the two exchange rates is 10,000 Lebanese pounds.

According to observers of the Sayrafa exchange platform, it was expected that supermarkets would also be excluded from benefiting from the Sayrafa exchange rate, as was the case with fuel import companies. 

Fuel is the only commodity that follows the black market rate, whether it rises or falls. Supermarkets make profits by pricing according to the black-market exchange rate, and their prices do not decrease if the Sayrafa exchange rate drops or increases.

Moreover, there is no control over profit margins, whether in dollars or Lebanese pounds, which is evident in the multiple prices for the same commodity in various supermarkets.

Nabil Fahd, head of the Supermarket Owners Syndicate, said that the talk of supermarkets benefiting from the Sayrafa exchange rate is exaggerated. The 10 billion Lebanese pounds per month represents only a small percentage of the daily financial activity in supermarkets. The daily financial activity in major supermarkets reaches 3 billion Lebanese pounds, and in some of the larger chains, it reaches hundreds of thousands of dollars daily. 

It is worth noting that in a previous instance, some supermarkets deposited money in banks to benefit from the Sayrafa exchange rate, but the money was returned to them without any benefit.

News Bulletin Reports

Lebanon

Supermarket

Rely

Parallel

Exchange

Rate

Benefitting

Sayrafa

Currency

Devaluation

Crisis

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