GNA Finance Minister Says Banking Sector in Complete Paralysis

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The Finance Minister of the Government of National Accord (GNA), Faraj Boumtari, said that the Libyan banking sector is in “complete paralysis”, and does not grant any loans or facilities to the private sector.
He indicated that the Central Bank demands lifting subsidies before reviewing its role in imposing foreign exchange control.

Boumtari added in a press statement that there is a gap between minimum and maximum salaries of more than 40 times, pointing out that the ministry is working to reach a fair salary scale in the state.

“The GNA’s Finance Ministry allocated one billion (LYD) to south Libya, but it was rejected by the Central Bank,” Boumtari said.

He revealed that the public debt of the Central Bank is about 80 billion LYD.

Boumtari noted that the ministry will approve the additional budget and allocate the necessary funds for paying salaries of public sector employees.

“One of our priorities is to settle the rights of employees who have not received their salaries for years. We called on the GNA to settle salaries in the 2020 budget, after achieving a surplus in fee income estimated at 12.9 billion LYD, and it is expected that the surplus will reach at the end of this year to 14 billion LYD.”

He noted that the ministry reduced government spending in Chapter 1 related to wages to 3.5 Libyan dinars.

Boumtari considered that the most important decisions taken within the framework of the economic reform program were to impose fees on foreign exchange sales, “which contributed to reducing the amount of inflation and reducing differences in the general budget.”

The minister stressed the necessity of boosting the economy and investments in order to activate tax collection system from the private sector.

He revealed that the existing monetary block is more than 100 billion LYD.

“The Ministry of Economy will soon launch 30 studies to help the private sector in Libya to start projects. There are joint discussions with the Ministry of Labour and the government to implement training programs for job seekers.”

Boumtari concluded by saying that the ministry has established a body to help the public and private sectors in development projects.