News / Economy

Libya Says Aims to Run Economy, Banking Under Islamic Law

FILE - A man walks past a Nike shop on Venice Street in Benghazi, Libya, Nov. 7, 2013.FILE - A man walks past a Nike shop on Venice Street in Benghazi, Libya, Nov. 7, 2013.
x
FILE - A man walks past a Nike shop on Venice Street in Benghazi, Libya, Nov. 7, 2013.
FILE - A man walks past a Nike shop on Venice Street in Benghazi, Libya, Nov. 7, 2013.
Reuters
Libya will transform its banking and economic system to comply fully with Islamic law that bans interest payments, the economy minister and other officials said on Monday, but they gave scant details on how the plans would be implemented.
 
Under Moammar Gadhafi, who was overthrown in 2011, the growth of Islamic banking was not encouraged and four state-controlled institutions dominated the relatively undeveloped financial sector of the OPEC oil producer.
 
Two years after Gadhafi's ouster, Prime Minister Ali Zeidan's government says it wants to attract foreign investment and develop the non-oil sector of the economy but is struggling to assert its authority against heavily-armed tribesmen and militias, and parts of the country remain outside its control.
 
It has also been weakened by political wrangling with Islamists who dominate the parliament, the General National Congress (GNC), which strongly backs the plans to introduce Islamic law into the economy.
 
Economy Minister Mustafa Abu Fanas said experts would now study how best to apply Islamic Sharia law in the economy.
 
“Regarding a starting date, this will need studies ... to see how and when we will transform,” he told reporters on the sidelines of a conference organized by his ministry to explore ways to introduce Islamic law.
 
“I can't give an exact start date,” Fanas said.
 
‘Strong economy’
 
When asked whether banks could retain conventional business models, he said: “Many researchers say there could be a gradual transformation by the Islamic and other banks towards an Islamic system, but in the long-term it is in our interest to have it ... to build up a strong economy.”
 
Some banking officials, technocrats and liberals privately fear a hasty transformation might add to the political turmoil in Libya, where militias use weapons seized in the 2011 uprising to lay siege to ministries or oil facilities to press their financial and political demands.
 
Fanas said the GNC had given the government time to ban interest payments, with the change to be in force by the start of 2015.
 
Salah Makhzoum, deputy head of the GNC, told the conference that Libya would be joining a growing international trend as more and more states turned to Islamic law following banking crises in the United States and Europe.
 
“The world is moving towards an Islamic economy,” he said.
 
Libya has about 16 mostly conventional banks, which have few ties with the outside world, a legacy of its long isolation under Gadhafi.
 
As well as banning interest payments, Islamic law also forbids investment in the gambling industry and in firms producing alcoholic drinks or pornography.
 
Fanas said Libya had become too dependent on its oil sector and said the government wanted to boost investment to upgrade infrastructure including hospitals and universities. It is also overhauling a foreign investment law from the Gadhafi era.

You May Like

UN: 1 Million Somalis at Risk of Hunger

Group warns region is in dire need of humanitarian aid, with at least 200,000 children under age of five acutely malnourished as drought hits southern, central part of nation More

Human Rights Groups Allege Supression of Freedoms in Thailand

Thailand’s military, police have suppressed release of independent report assessing human rights in kingdom during first 100 days of latest coup More

Jennifer Lawrence Contacts FBI After Nude Photos Hacked

'Silver Linings Playbook' actress' photos were posted on image-sharing forum 4chan; Federal Bureau of Investigations is looking into matter More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
January 06, 2014 10:02 PM
yeah... that will do it... Islamic deemookrassy... more blood libation...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7537
JPY
USD
103.79
GBP
USD
0.6032
CAD
USD
1.0957
INR
USD
60.522

Rates may not be current.