Industry in Libya

Industry in Libya Last updated on Thursday 22nd April 2010

The discovery of oil in 1959 has transformed Libya from a poor nation at the time of its independence, to a far more prosperous one, ranking 12th among petroleum producers worldwide in 1991. The main oil fields are linked by pipeline to terminals on the coast, and Libya produces about 1.5 million barrels per annum.

Oil reserves are said to be only moderate, however, with enough oil to last for about 50 years at the present rate of extraction.

The petro-chemical industry, which depends on the oil sector for raw materials, has grown rapidly, with large-scale industrial complexes situated at Ras Lanuf and Bu Kammash. Oil now provides the government with its main source of revenue and constitutes 99% of Libya's exports.

All manufacturing and private-sector industries have been nationalized. These include food-processing, textiles, tanning and the production of traditional handicrafts.

The fishing industry lands mostly tuna and sardines in fairly small quantities. Sponges are also collected near the shoreline.

Minerals include marine salt and potash.

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