November 7, 2022

Lebanon’s Locals Turning to Cryptocurrencies amid Economic Crisis



In light of the unstable financial situation in Lebanon, locals begin to pay attention to cryptocurrencies as a lifeline for survival.

Although Lebanese law prohibits crypto payments, businesses are increasingly advertising that they accept crypto on Instagram and other social media platforms. Some hotels and tourism agencies are reported that they started to accept Tether.

CNBC Network reported that many Lebanese people are currently making profits by using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and trading in tether for US dollars through Telegram groups.

This is pushed by the locals’ fear of keeping their money in the banks or as cash at their homes not to be stolen.

Two years ago, Ahmad Abu Daher, a Lebanese man, started mining Ethereum with his friend using three machines powered by hydroelectric power. Despite the Lebanese police crackdown, Abu Daher asserted that they do not affect the country’s electricity infrastructure.

It is known that the mining process needs a lot of electricity, expensive equipment, and some technical know-how.

However, Abu Daher sees that his mining project is profitable, saying he has customers outside Lebanon, like Syria, France, the United Kingdom, and Turkey.

“We started by selling and buying USDT because the amount of demand on USDT is very high,” Abu Daher told CNBC.

The American news network mentioned other Lebanese youngmen, who opened projects to earn in cryptocurrency or began mining processes to get digital tokens as a sole source of income. Another local, called Georgio Abou Gebrael, said Bitcoin gives him hope.

Meanwhile, Microstrategy’s CEO Michael Saylor tweeted: “Bitcoin is hope for Lebanon.”

According to new data released by Chainalysis, Lebanon comes in the second position following Turkey in the Middle East and North Africa region in terms of the volume of cryptocurrency received, as it was up about 120%, year-over-year

A report by the World Bank report released in 2021 warned that Lebanon would suffer one of most severe economic crises since the mid-19th century unless its “bankrupt economic system benefited a few for so long” was reformed.

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