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Libya Economy Profile 2018

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Economy - overviewLibya's economy, almost entirely dependent on oil and gas exports, struggled during the period 2014-16 as the country plunged into civil war and world oil prices dropped to seven-year lows. In early 2015, armed conflict between rival forces for control of the country’s largest oil terminals caused a decline in Libyan crude oil production, which never recovered to more than one-third of the average pre-Revolution highs of 1.6 million barrels per day. The Central Bank of Libya continued to pay government salaries to a majority of the Libyan workforce and to fund subsidies for fuel and food, resulting in an estimated budget deficit of about 17% of GDP in 2017. The economy recovered handsomely in 2017 as conflict subsided.

Libya’s economic transition away from QADHAFI’s notionally socialist model has completely stalled as political chaos persists and security continues to deteriorate. Libya’s leaders have hindered economic development by failing to use its financial resources to invest in national infrastructure. The country suffers from widespread power outages in its largest cities, caused by shortages of fuel for power generation. Living conditions, including access to clean drinking water, medical services, and safe housing, have all declined as the civil war has forced more people to become internally displaced, further straining local resources.

Extremists affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) attacked Libyan oilfields in the first half of 2015; ISIL has a presence in many cities across Libya including near oil infrastructure, threatening future government revenues from oil and gas.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$63.14 billion (2017 est.)
$40.72 billion (2016 est.)
$41.96 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$33.31 billion (2016 est.)
GDP - real growth rate55.1% (2017 est.)
-3% (2016 est.)
-10.3% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$9,800 (2017 est.)
$6,400 (2016 est.)
$6,600 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
Gross national saving1.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
-11% of GDP (2016 est.)
-8% of GDP (2015 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 76.1%
government consumption: 19.4%
investment in fixed capital: 2.8%
investment in inventories: 1.4%
exports of goods and services: 39.7%
imports of goods and services: -39.5% (2017 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 1.3%
industry: 63.8%
services: 34.9% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty lineNA%
note: about one-third of Libyans live at or below the national poverty line
Labor force1.114 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 17%
industry: 23%
services: 59% (2004 est.)
Unemployment rate30% (2004 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 48.7%
male: 40.8%
female: 67.8% (2012 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budgetrevenues: $16.33 billion
expenditures: $22.32 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues49% of GDP (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-18% of GDP (2017 est.)
Public debt5.1% of GDP (2017 est.)
7.4% of GDP (2016 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)32.8% (2017 est.)
27.1% (2016 est.)
Central bank discount rate9.52% (31 December 2010)
3% (31 December 2009)
Commercial bank prime lending rate7.3% (31 December 2017 est.)
6% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money$76.35 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$62.57 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money$77.89 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$63.76 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$16.82 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$14.14 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
Agriculture - productswheat, barley, olives, dates, citrus, vegetables, peanuts, soybeans; cattle
Industriespetroleum, petrochemicals, aluminum, iron and steel, food processing, textiles, handicrafts, cement
Industrial production growth rate76.5% (2017 est.)
Current Account Balance$591 million (2017 est.)
-$4.575 billion (2016 est.)
Exports$19.72 billion (2017 est.)
$11.99 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commoditiescrude oil, refined petroleum products, natural gas, chemicals
Exports - partnersItaly 24.2%, Egypt 21.1%, Spain 9.5%, France 7.8%, Croatia 5%, Netherlands 5%, China 4.3% (2016)
Imports$12.66 billion (2017 est.)
$11.01 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiesmachinery, semi-finished goods, food, transport equipment, consumer products
Imports - partnersChina 14.4%, South Korea 13.3%, Turkey 10.4%, Italy 5.9% (2016)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$69.35 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$66.05 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external$2.927 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.116 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$19.07 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$18.96 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$22.77 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$22.19 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratesLibyan dinars (LYD) per US dollar -
1.413 (2017 est.)
1.3904 (2016 est.)
1.3904 (2015 est.)
1.379 (2014 est.)
1.2724 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on January 20, 2018

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