In Tripoli and adjacent regions, ATM cards are extensively utilized, and most big-name businesses and several coffee shops take major cards. Before leaving large cities, double-check that your card will function, since prior networks and ATMs may be destroyed or unavailable.
During the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya period of government, the oil industry provided approximately 95 percent of export profits, nearly a quarter of GDP, and 60 percent of public sector salaries. Libya has one of the highest per capita GDPs in Africa, thanks to substantial earnings from the oil industry and a tiny population. In the final four years of their rule, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya authorities made headway on economic reforms as part of a larger effort to reintegrate the country into the international community. This initiative gained traction when UN sanctions were removed in September 2003 and Libya declared in December 2003 that it would stop developing weapons of mass destruction. In April 2004, the United States removed almost all unilateral sanctions on Libya, allowing the country to attract greater foreign direct investment, primarily in the oil sector. Libya (under the government of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya) has filed for WTO membership, eliminating certain subsidies and announcing intentions to privatize several state-owned businesses. The previous Libyan government made significant investments in African projects, including as large-scale telecommunications and other important international infrastructure and development initiatives. In 2001, sanctions were re-imposed. During the civil war, acts by local rebels and foreign armed forces essentially shut down the regular duties of civil administration, and the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya government was unable to continue operating viably in 2011. Libya’s foreign reserve holdings and other assets have been handed to the NTC interim government. The proceeds from the sale of crude oil have been diverted to them. Libya’s economic management and future prospects will remain unclear until a government is formed.