Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said Agricultural production in Libya is constrained by the landscape, adding that only about 12 percent of the total area of 15.4 million hectares is arable.
"Although 470 000 hectares are suitable for irrigation, only some 240 000 hectares are currently irrigated due to concerns over the depletion of underground water." FAO added in a statement.
It also said the country relies heavily on imports (up to 90 percent) to cover its cereal consumption requirements (mostly wheat for human consumption and barley for feed).
"Between 2016 and 2020, the country sourced over 30 percent of its wheat imports from Ukraine, and 20 percent from the Russian Federation. Almost 65 percent of total maize imports of 650 000 tonnes, and 50 percent of total barley imports of 1 million tonnes originated from Ukraine, making the country vulnerable to disruptions in shipments from the Black Sea region." FAO said.
It said the World Bank estimated that the Libyan economy grew by over 30 percent in 2021, driven by strengthening global oil prices and improved political stability.
"Despite elevated international crude oil prices benefiting the economy that is reliant on exports of hydrocarbons, disruptions to oil production and security tensions following the delay of national elections in December 2021 make predictions of economic growth in 2022 unreliable." FAO added.
According to the 2022 Libya Humanitarian Needs Overview, about 0.8 million people (10 percent of the population) are estimated to be in need of humanitarian assistance, down from 1.3 million one year earlier. It includes 500 000 people requiring food assistance, about a third less than in 2021.