Situated in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Levant, Syria is bordered by Turkey, the Mediterranean Sea, Jordan, Israel, and Lebanon. This unitary republic consists of 14 governorates and is home to diverse ethnic and religious groups.
Because of the Syrian Civil that began in 2011, causing a significant loss of life, and displacement of people, Syria has been ranked as one of the most violent countries in the world. Revenue sources like customs and income taxes have declined, resulting in a deteriorating economy and heavy reliance on credit lines from Iran. The economic landscape has undergone a transformation, with a mix of state-owned enterprises and a war-driven economy.
Prior to the war, Syria was classified as a "lower middle-income country," relying on the oil and agriculture sectors. employment. However, oil reserves are diminishing, causing Syria to become a net oil importer. To mitigate protests and safeguard foreign currency reserves, the government has increased subsidies and implemented trade controls. Syria also faces long-term economic constraints, including trade barriers, declining oil production, high unemployment, budget deficits, and water supply pressures. Poverty rates in the country have gone as a substantial portion of the population living below the subsistence level.
The Syrian pound is Syria's currency, issued by the Central Bank of Syria. It is divided into 100 piastres. Over the years, the currency underwent language changes on banknotes and the introduction of new denominations. Recent additions include the 2,000 note featuring President Bashar al-Assad and the 5,000 note released in January 2021. The Central Bank of Syria introduced various new banknotes in different denominations, with designs often changing and featuring historical and artistic elements.