Libyan central banks reunite after seven years of separation


Libya’s rival central banks said on Monday they had reached a reunification deal, seven years after their split as conflict tore the country apart.

The original bank, which manages the North African state’s vast oil revenues, was dissolved in 2014 when a complex civil war resulted in rival administrations in the east and west.

But on Monday, the governor of the internationally recognized body in the western capital Tripoli, Seddik al-Kabir and his eastern-based counterpart Ali al-Hebri “agreed on a detailed plan to start the process of unification, “the Tripoli body said in a statement. declaration.

The meeting was attended by consultants from Deloitte, which in July carried out an audit of the two branches.

Libya collapsed in years of violence following the fall of 2011 and the murder of dictator Muammar Gaddafi in a NATO-backed revolt.

A chain of state institutions, including the central bank, split in two during the escalation in 2014 that divided the country, broadly, into eastern and western camps.

The existence of two central banks has made it difficult to manage Libya’s vital oil revenues and control monetary policy, contributing to soaring inflation and a liquidity crisis despite its vast crude reserves.

But a ceasefire in mid-2020 allowed reunification efforts to begin, and even before the truce was formalized, Deloitte International was tasked with auditing the institutions.

United Nations envoy Jan Kubic delivered the completed audit report to interim Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibah in July this year.

The division caused significant financial losses and an increase in public debt to more than $ 100 billion, according to the bank.

The reunification deal comes before Libya is due to hold elections on December 24 aimed at moving past a decade of violence.

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