Libya - Balance of payments

Libya customarily registered balance-of-payments surpluses from 1962 until 1981, thanks to large trade surpluses derived from the export of oil. Declining oil production caused payments deficits from 1981 to 1984. The services and transfers accounts are in deficit because of travel by Libyans abroad, transportation costs, payments to foreign contractors, and remittances by foreign workers. The capital account is also usually in deficit because of Libyan aid and investment abroad. Foreign debt is difficult to calculate because trade debts are often settled by the barter supply of oil.

The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reports that in 2001 the purchasing power parity of Libya's exports was $13.1 billion while imports totaled $8.7 billion resulting in a trade surplus of $4.4 billion.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reports that in 1999 Libya had exports of goods totaling $6.76 billion and imports totaling $4 billion. The services credit totaled $55 million and debit $918 million. The following table summarizes Libya's balance of payments as reported by the IMF for 1999 in millions of US dollars.


Current Account 1,984
Balance on goods 2,762
Balance on services -863
Balance on income 289
Current transfers -204
Capital Account
Financial Account -971
Direct investment abroad -210
Direct investment in Libya -119
Portfolio investment assets -3
Portfolio investment liabilities
Other investment assets -293
Other investment liabilities -346
Net Errors and Omissions -372
Reserves and Related Items -641

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