Libyan economist on Washington’s plan to manage oil revenue: poison in honey

Days after Washington announced an international plan to manage Libyan oil revenues without disclosing its details, which Libyans saw as a promise of their country’s resources to a foreign country.

The US ambassador to Libya, Richard Norland, announced a few days ago an international plan to manage Libya’s oil revenues, saying it would manage Libya’s resources with “transparency”, he said.

The US plan, which came after Libyan protesters closed ports and oil fields, in protest against the failure of Abdel Hamid al-Dabaiba, head of the outgoing unity government, to hand over power, is an attempt by Washington to seize the Libyan oil sector to distance. of the political conflict that hampered Europe’s plans to take advantage of it, to compensate for Russia’s shortage of oil and gas.

Violation of the law

In addition, the Libyan economic expert and founder of the Libyan capital market, dr. Suleiman Al-Shahoumi, said he had seen “the leaks of the Libyan oil and gas revenue management document”, noting that it would be by a joint Libyan. committee and with international oversight and foreign control by an international accounting firm.

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Al-Shahoumi made it clear in statements to Al-Ain News that this international accounting firm would take the place of the Libyan executive and supervisory supervisory bodies, in violation of the law restricting the audit, investigation and control of state accounts to responsible bodies. such as the Audit Bureau, Administrative Control and the Judiciary.

The Libyan economist stressed that it was not acceptable for a party other than Libya to examine the accounts and operations of sovereign income and the ways to spend it, noting that the Libyan defenders of that project claim that it ‘ is a Libyan-Libyan project and that it is the only way to restore oil exports, but that it is tantamount to “poisoning in honey.” “.

Suleiman al-Shahoumi condemned the ambiguity that the project sees as Libyan and Libyan, while all acknowledge the interference of international parties to manage the program and control it externally, which has “dangerous aspects”.

Project risk

Al-Shahoumi, who works as a professor of finance at Nottingham Trent University, warned against the project, saying that this committee would manage Libyan funds in violation of the law and through the Libyan state’s reserves of hard currency in the accounts of the To keep oil. Corporation with a commercial bank not resident in Libya (the Libyan Foreign Bank), noting that The degree of risk is high; Because it will be non-sovereign money because it is not deposited with the Central Bank.

The second of these risks – according to Al-Shahoumi – that this committee will meet periodically to transfer the amounts to the account of the Libyan state at the Central Bank, by allocating the available revenue to cover specific expenses, perhaps according to the general budget or according to what has been agreed to cover the basic expenses of the Libyan people, in particular salaries and other items other.

He pointed out that this point would inevitably be reflected in the ability of the Central Bank to manage reserves in accordance with the Banking Act, to allow the presence of another party not authorized by law or the people. , to manage those reserves, which will affect the Central Bank’s ability to make foreign currency available for foreign trade purposes such as opening credits for the provision of goods and other external payments.

effect on prices

Al-Shahoumi stressed that the impact of this would be reflected in the exchange rate in the parallel market, which would be reflected in price levels in the local market, and noted that the Central Bank of Libya would pursue a deflationary policy due to the lack of revenue. of foreign currency on account of the Libyan state on a regular basis, and it will have to control more Previously available foreign exchange reserves.

Al-Shahoumi spoke of 3 risks to the US project, saying that “the belief that it will achieve justice in the distribution of oil revenues is only a sent word. Investment spending, which reflects all spending requirements according to the resources available to all parts of the country, west, east and south.

He pointed out that this project includes having an internationally respected global accounting firm or office conduct investigations into government contracts and tenders to replace the State Audit Office, and carry out the associated and post-issue review process, which will be very costly and illegal, and emphasizes that it can only be implemented if the Bureau has agreed Liability for this, in clear violation of the law on the one hand is responsible for its application.

Project alternatives

On the alternatives, the Libyan economic expert said, they are represented in a national declaration of principles in which the legislative authorities (Parliament and the Council of State) and their weapons of the supervisory authorities (the Audit Bureau and the Administrative Control Authority) and the Central Bank participate; To reconstitute the Central Bank’s board or complete the merger process between the two branches of the Bank of Libya, and to open bank accounts immediately.

He pointed to the need for the return of oil exports by agreeing on a national initiative addressing the criminality of the capabilities of the Libyan people and the formation of a national team of supervisory authorities (the Audit Bureau and Administrative Control). , parliament, the state will criminalize. Council and the Central Bank, under the direction of a judge chosen by the Supreme Court to manage public spending and limit it to basic aspects and to consider contracts and the extent necessary during the transitional period.

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