Libya’s central bank said it reunited with its breakaway rival after nine years of division, a rare step toward consolidating state institutions in the North African OPEC member battered by long-running conflict.
(Bloomberg) — Libya’s central bank said it reunited with its breakaway rival after nine years of division, a rare step toward consolidating state institutions in the North African OPEC member battered by long-running conflict.
The announcement followed a meeting between Tripoli-based Governor Sadiq Al-Kabir and officials from the rival regulator in the eastern city of Benghazi. Representatives are now working to address the impact of the split, according to a statement Sunday from the central bank in the capital.
Read More: Reunifying Libya’s Central Bank Will Take Six Months, Kabir Says
The divergence dates back to a 2014 power struggle that saw Libya divided between a United Nations-recognized government in Tripoli and a challenger in the east. Over the following years, which saw a failed attempt by eastern fighters to seize the capital and an eventual 2020 cease-fire, Kabir’s bank remained the one that was internationally accepted.
The division impacted issues including the foreign-exchange rate and allocation of oil wealth in a country that’s home to Africa’s largest proven reserves. Kabir has previously said that reunification would finally allow the bank to consolidate monetary policy and eliminate parallel spending.
The announcement marks a rare success in bridging one of Libya’s divides and contrasts with faltering UN-backed efforts to end a political impasse. Nationwide elections slated for December 2021 were canceled and the leadership of the country is once again split between a Tripoli-based prime minister and an eastern parliament intent on replacing him.
Read More: Putin Gains in Oil-Rich Libya as US Struggles to Oust Wagner
More stories like this are available on bloomberg.com
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.