Bread Crisis Looming in Libya

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On Monday, bakery owners in Sebha have agreed to suspend their work starting at the beginning of February, due to the high cost of ingredients. They called on the concerned authorities to work on providing their supplies at a reasonable price.

These remarks came in a meeting held by the bakery owners, during which they urged the Libyan Attorney General, the Commander of the Sebha Military Region, the Administrative Control Authority, the Food and Drug Control Center (FDCC), and the Brega Petroleum Marketing Company to work on bridging the gap regarding the severe shortage of flour.

They explained that this decision came due to the price hikes of basic goods, such as sugar, yeast, and oil, noting that the price of a quintal of flour (100kg) reached approximately 250 dinars.

They claimed that municipality bakeries do not get their quantities of diesel fuel, which prompts the owners to buy diesel from the black market at very high prices

On Saturday, Director of Libya’s Flour Milling and Animal Feed Company, Jamal Juili warned of an acute flour shortage in Libya. He explained that the company’s mills have only produced limited quantities of flour that do not exceed 170 tons.

Juili cited the lack of economic policies to maintain a strategic stock of flour, as the cause of the flour shortage.

He added that the price of a quintal of flour increased from 130 Libyan Dinars to 250 Libyan dinars, warning that the price of flour will continue to rise due to the lack of supply in the market.

Last week, the General Union of Bakers in Tripoli shut down all bakeries in the city due to increased prices of ingredients. The Food and Drug Control Centre (FDCC) of the Government of National Accord (GNA) announced an agreement to bring the price of bread back to its previous level.

The decision was taken to avoid what observers have described as a “bread revolt” that risks erupting throughout the country at any moment.