UN mission announces details of latest Economic Working Group on Libya meetings

Alwasat - Cairo Thu 07 Jan 2021, 12:55 AM
alwasat radio

The UN envoy in Libya Stephanie Williams on Wednesday convened a virtual meeting to follow up on the economic Libyan reforms discussed in Geneva on Dec. 14-15, 2020.

The meeting was attended by co-chairs of the Economic Working Group (EWG) of the International Follow Up Committee for Libya including the ambassadors of Egypt, the EU and the United States, as well as senior officials from the UN-backed Libyan government and the east-based government, the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said in a statement.

Libyan experts from the Libyan Economic Dialogue and representatives of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund also participated in the meeting, UNSMIL added.

The EWG welcomed the increased collaboration and exchanges among Libyan economic and financial institutions including the two branches of Central Bank of Libya (CBL) and the the two Ministries of Finance, said the statement.

The CBL Board of Directors first met on Dec. 16, 2020 after six years of inactivity, according to the statement.

"This renewed cooperation is enabling Libyan institutions to implement long overdue economic reforms," the statement noted.

"The decision of the CBL Board of Directors to unify the exchange rate of the local currency against foreign currencies will strengthen the Libyan dinar, lower commodity prices and reduce the space for money laundering and corruption, as well as ensure that all economic actors have access to the same exchange rate," it said.

In December 2020, the CBL changed the Libyan dinar's exchange rate against U.S. dollar from 1.4 dinars against 1 dollar to 4.48 dinars against 1 dollar, in an attempt to introduce economic reforms in the country.

Participants agreed that funds need to be effectively allocated to local governance, the National Oil Corporation and basic services, specifically the deteriorating electricity sector.

The UNSMIL also highlighted the importance of agreement on a consolidated and unified budget in order to create a more durable, equitable and accountable economic arrangement in Libya including the management of oil revenues.

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