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Lebanon’s Economy Heavily Impacted by Hezbollah-Israel Confrontations

A Lebanese economic official on Wednesday said Lebanon’s economy deteriorated dramatically since the beginning of the conflict in Gaza and the armed clashes on the Lebanese-Israeli border, warning of a possible collapse of various sectors in the country.

“The revenues generated by the various economic sectors during the summer are being depleted,” Mohammad Choucair, president of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry, and Agriculture in Beirut and Mount Lebanon, said in a statement released by the chamber.

While demand for food has increased as people buy large quantities, fearing the possible expansion of the Hezbollah-Israeli confrontations, the need for luxurious products dropped by around 70 percent, Choucair said.

Choucair noted that the restaurant sector recorded a significant contraction of around 80 percent, and the occupancy rate at hotels is currently estimated at 10 percent, with some hotels being completely vacant.

He added that the car rental sector recorded a decline of over 90 percent, while most reservations for conferences and social activities in the country were canceled.

Choucair noted that merchants’ imports of goods declined, which impacted maritime transport through the Beirut port, in addition to the suspension of some export contracts as foreign importers are concerned about the current instability in Lebanon.

Choucair said that arrivals to Lebanon through the Beirut airport dropped by 33 percent over the past ten days due to the instability on the southern border, while departure traffic increased by 28 percent.

The border between Lebanon and Israel has witnessed daily bombing and an intermittent exchange of fire between Hezbollah, Palestinian movements, and the Israeli army since the launching of the “Al-Aqsa Flood” operation by the Hamas movement on Oct. 7.

On Wednesday, four Hezbollah fighters were killed and five others were injured during confrontations with the Israeli army on the Lebanese-Israeli border, a statement by the Shiite military group reported.

Sources at the Lebanese Internal Security Forces told Xinhua that Israeli warplanes and drones attacked the Sadana mountain heights, the southeastern village of Kfar Hamam, the southern town of Tal Al-Nahas, the outskirts of the southeastern village of Kfarchouba village, southern villages of Aitaroun and Aita al-Shaab, Halta, a village in the far southeast of Lebanon, and the Al-Abad site on the border.

Hezbollah announced on the same day that it attacked the Israeli “Branit” Barracks using missiles and artillery shells, causing several casualties, and it struck the Israeli occupation site of Khirbet Al-Manara with rockets.