World Bank report unveils that Libya’s economy is inches away from collapse

The Libyan economy is on the verge of collapse says a World Bank report (Photo: World Bank).
The Libyan economy is on the verge of collapse says a World Bank report (Photo: World Bank).

The Libyan economy is facing collapse as the civil war is disrupting the country’s main source of income oil production, warns the World Bank.

“With oil production just a fifth of the potential, revenues have plummeted, pushing fiscal and current account deficits to record highs. With the dinar rapidly losing value, inflation has accelerated, further eroding real incomes,” the report said, according to RT.

As a result of falling crude prices and low output, Libya’s foreign reserves have shrunk from $107.6 billion in 2013 to a projected $43 billion by the end of this year, it added.

RT also indicated that over the first half of 2016, the country managed to produce an average of 335 thousand barrels per day, down 20 percent from last year. Libya’s daily oil production before the 2011 uprising stood at 1.6 million barrels.

The Libyan economy has shrunk by an estimated 8.3 percent, leaving the country in recession since 2013, with GDP per capita dropping by nearly two-thirds of its pre-revolution level, the bank says, wrote the RT website Tuesday.

It added, in the first seven month of 2016, Libya’s state income of 3.2 billion dinar ($2.28 billion) was just a tenth of what it was during the same period last year. The Libyan dinar has dropped 73 percent against the dollar on the black market.

The budget deficit remained high at 69 percent of GDP. “While the central government was a net lender before the revolution, domestic debt has since quickly increased to reach a high 110 percent of GDP in 2016,” the WB reports stressing that the deficit was financed mainly through borrowing from the Central Bank of Libya, RT went on.

Adding that constant shortages have meant food prices have increased 31 percent in the first half of the year, according to World Bank calculations. “Headline inflation jumped to 24 percent over the same period,” the report says. Inflation is expected to average 20 percent this year.

“Wages also fell by 8.7 percent reflecting efforts to remove duplicate payments from government payrolls through extending and enforcing the use of the national identification number,” the World Bank report says.

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