By Libya Herald reporter.
Malta, 21 January 2015:
The Libyan government, the only internationally recognized government in Libya, confirmed yesterday its intention to close . . .[restrict]down some of its embassies and recall what it sees as surplus diplomatic staff.
The decision was announced yesterday after its cabinet meeting in Beida.
The decision comes as part of a wider cost-saving drive caused by Libya’s political instability, low oil exports and the drastic fall in international crude oil prices.
No details were made available as to the embassies targeted for closure nor the number of diplomatic staff to be recalled.
It will be recalled, and as reported by Libya Herald, that the proposal to close embassies and reduce diplomatic staff was first raised by Foreign Minister Al-Dairi during the Thinni government’s first cabinet meeting of 2015.
Dairi had suggested in his report that a moratorium be imposed on new attachés being sent abroad and a programme of redundancies for a number of those in post. After discussing the report and approving it in principle, the cabinet had nonetheless asked for a quick, detailed study into the effects of reducing the number of embassy attachés.
Yesterday’s cabinet meeting decided that only the necessary number of staff is to be retained so as to enable the continuation of work in line with the relations Libya enjoys with the relevant countries. The various ministries were requested to put forward their urgent proposals to reduce the number of staff at overseas missions.
It will be recalled that Libyan overseas mission staff are some of the best paid state-sector employees in Libya, especially when all the various allowances afforded to them are taken into account.
These attractive pay-packages, not to mention the quality of life, education and health attained from being posted at a prime location abroad, have made overseas posts much sought after and abused by the various political factions and tribes as nepotism has meant each interest group has authorised its allies to overseas postings, leading to an excessive glut of overseas staff. [/restrict]