Here are the top stories for Lebanon today:
The Lebanese government agreed on Friday to raise the tax on interest payments to 10% from 7% for three years as part of the draft 2019 budget, the information minister said. The chairman of the Lebanese banking association recently warned any increase in the tax on interest payments would affect capital flows to Lebanon, weaken banks’ ability to play their financing role in the economy, and obstruct growth.
The Lebanese government said on Friday that only soldiers serving at the frontline with Israel would benefit from a financial incentive that was designed for frontline troops but has been widely applied. A demand for the strict application of the “Measure 3” scheme was included in a tough draft budget that has triggered strikes and protests in recent weeks, including by retired soldiers.