Fortified granary Qasr al Hadj, Libya

Libya Hopes for a new start not yet fulfilled

The fall of the dictator Muammar al-Gaddafi in 2011 created warring sides in Libya. Two rival governments and numerous armed militia are fighting for control in the North African country, whose inhabitants have to endure violence, insecurity and political power struggles.

Flag decoration on the occasion of the Second Libya Conference in Berlin on 23 June 2021

Due in part to the rising cost of food resulting from Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, some sections of the population are living in precarious circumstances. According to the United Nations, more than 800,000 people in Libya – many of whom are migrants or have been displaced – rely on humanitarian aid.

Together with the international community (EU, UN), Germany supports Libya in building peace, rebuilding democratic institutions and implementing political and economic reforms.

The objective is to achieve political, economic and social stability in Libya and facilitate free and fair elections.

German development cooperation with Libya

Libya is a “nexus and peace partner” of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). Cooperation with these partner countries focuses on the structural causes of conflict and migration and supports the restoration of peace and stability.

BMZ advises the government and the administration on reconstruction and on creating and improving the performance of state structures and also strengthens civil society, above all women. As Libya has significant income from oil exports, financing of the required infrastructure lies to a large degree with the country itself.

BMZ’s commitment covers the following key areas:

  • Municipal development: Improvement of living conditions in 25 municipalities situated along key migration routes, e.g. by establishing waste disposal services for 700,000 people, increasing drinking water quality for 1.1 million people, setting up women’s centres, providing better schooling for 100,000 children and strengthening citizen participation in municipalities.
  • Social engagement among young people: More than half of the Libyan population is under 30. Most young people are excluded from social and political participation however, and there are virtually no state or civil society structures for empowering them. In six municipalities, youth multipliers are being trained, youth centres set up and programmes supported.
  • Health care: Improvement of health care for 240,000 people, establishment of rapid response teams and emergency committees in 15 municipalities, psychosocial support for 10,000 children, logistical support for the COVID-19 vaccination programme with a particular focus on refugees and migrants.
  • Renewable energies: Support for the decentralised use of solar energy to prevent power outages and alleviate conflict over energy supply.

BMZ provided Libya with funding of 32 million euros in 2021. With commitments of 128 million euros since 2015, Germany is the second-biggest development donor, after the USA. The development projects themselves are implemented by GIZ and by UN and non-governmental organisations. Since 2022, cooperation is once again being directed from Tripoli for the most part (following a temporary shift to Tunis).

Current situation

Harbour promenade in Tripoli
Street scene in Zliten, a town in north-west Libya
Workshop and vehicles of a car dealer in Libya

As at: 23/01/2023