A comprehensive forensic audit conducted by the New York-based firm Alvarez and Marsal has shed light on a period of impropriety presided over by the central bank’s former governor. The audit’s findings disclose $111 million in “illegitimate commissions,” according to a report issued by the company. The implementation of this forensic audit had been a paramount demand from the international community and the International Monetary Fund, who, over the years, had increasingly lost faith in Lebanon’s ability to navigate its profound crisis.
LIMS expounds upon the revelations of the forensic audit, underscoring the sheer magnitude of foreign reserve losses sustained by the central bank, amounting to a staggering $71.9 billion USD. Those losses were obscured through the utilization of unorthodox and unconventional accounting standards, with the central bank’s governor personally benefiting from financial engineering operations. However, the remaining $71.8 billion in losses remains unexamined, warranting an extension of the forensic audit to encompass government ministries that were recipients of these funds. Notably, the primary objective of this financial engineering was to underpin government financing, making it imperative to scrutinize how these resources were allocated and utilized.