Libya’s central bank reunifies after almost a decade

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – The Central Bank of Libya has been reinstated as a unified sovereign institution, its governor said on Sunday, almost a decade after it was split in two due to civil war.

Governor Sadiq al-Kabir made the announcement at the bank’s headquarters in Tripoli after a meeting with Deputy Governor Mari Muftah Rahil and department heads from both Tripoli and Benghazi branches.

Libya’s central bank has been divided between western and eastern branches since 2014 after a parallel administration emerged in the east when the country split following a civil war.

Oil-rich Libya descended into chaos after the NATO-backed overthrow of leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

“This is a crucial milestone in enhancing the performance of this vital sovereign institution, as we remain committed to integration and bolstering transparency and disclosure measures adopted by our government,” Prime Minister Abdulhamid AlDabaiba said on X.

The central bank signaled its intent to move toward reunification in January 2020 as part of a peace progress after a ceasefire, and instructed professional services firm Deloitte to help with the transition.

(Reporting by Tala Ramadan and Ayman Werfali; Writing by Tala Ramadan and Ahmed Elumami; Editing by Christina Fincher)