9.7 billion dinar banknotes have been printed in Russia in the last three years by the parallel Al-Bayda-based Central Bank of Libya (CBL) and with the endorsement of the House of Representatives based in east of the country, a CBL official revealed.
The parallel CBL advisor Musbah Al-Ekari told a Libyan TV channel that the printing of the banknotes was aimed at resolving cash problems at the banks in eastern Libya, adding that the CBL’s governor Ali Al-Hibri had no other option.
“We printed 4 billion dinars in 2016, 4 others in 2017 and so far in 2018, we have printed 1.7 billion dinars, thus making the total of banknotes printed in Russia 9.7 billion.” Al-Ekari explained.
He also lashed out the Tripoli0based CBL’s governor Al-Siddiq Al-Kabeer for “bad distribution of cash” in Libya, blaming the CBL’s policies for the choice of printing banknotes in Russia.
The advisor denies as well the news about their intention to print new banknotes, citing the parallel CBL’s agreement with the decision of the Presidential Council to carry out economic reforms, including the fees on dollar purchases.
Analysts say the announcement of the parallel CBL comes as precaution for their reputation before the UN-led auditing of the CBL’s accounts in Al-Bayda and Tripoli.
Both governors agreed in Tunisia to allow an international firm to audit the spending and sources of money as well as the rest of transactions made in both administrations in east and west Libya.
Analysts also believe that the printing of the banknotes in Russia worsen the monetary crisis in Libya and helped deepen more than save the devaluation of the dinar.
Whereas other analysts say the printing of the banknotes aimed at funding Khalifa Haftar’s war on Benghazi and Derna with some much of the money spent on buying weapons from Egypt, UAE and Eastern European countries, let alone paying foreign mercenary fighters who back Haftar’s forces in their operations.