By Sami Zaptia.
London, 14 July 2020:
There was a new edition to Libya’s banking sector last week (7 July) with the opening of the private sector Andalus bank. It has taken the bank three years to open since its successful IPO in May 2017.
Andalus bank is now part of Libya’s array of 19 banks. There is a total of 543 branches in the sector employing around 19,000 people. Libya’s private banking sector is undercapitalized with only LD 4 bn (about US 1 bn).
The private sector banks are deemed more efficient and customer responsive as they have to compete in a climate dominated by the big state-owned banks. State entities are prohibited by law from opening accounts at private banks. The whole sector is in need of serious reform to free it from the Qaddafi era banking laws designed for a socialist era.