Lebanon can’t pay debts, suspends March bond payment-PM

Lebanon can’t pay debts, suspends March bond payment-PM
Lebanon's prime minister designate Hassan Diab

Lebanon will not pay a $1.2 billion Eurobond due onMarch 9 as its foreign currency reserves have hit critical levels and areneeded to meet the basic needs of the Lebanese people, Prime Minister HassanDiab said on Saturday.

In a televised address, Diab said Lebanon was not able topay maturing debt in the "current circumstances" and would work torestructure its debt through negotiations with bondholders, Reuters reported.

Lebanon's public debt had reached more than 170% ofgross domestic product, meaning the country was close to being the world's mostheavily indebted state, Diab concluded.

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