[Marxism] RNN: Neo-liberalism a greater threat to Libya than tribalism or extreme Islam

Patrick Bond pbond at mail.ngo.za
Mon Aug 22 22:33:28 MDT 2011


(From 
http://www.palestine.rosalux.org/news/37588/economic-attacks-against-arab-democracy.html  
)


The same neoliberal pro-dictator narrative was established in Libya, for 
example, in the IMF's (2010c, p. 7) October 2010 pronouncements in which 
Muammar Gaddafi's mass firing of 340 000 civil servants was celebrated: 
'About a quarter have reportedly found other sources of income and are 
no longer receiving transfers from the state budget. The mission 
recommends that the retrenchment program be accelerated.'

The IMF's last full Article IV Consultation for Libya was published on 
February 15, 2011, just before civil war broke out. Implying that 
Gaddafi was safe from the Arab Spring, the IMF (2011b, pp. 2-3) noted 
that 'Recent developments in neighboring Egypt and Tunisia have had 
limited economic impact on Libya so far,' and flattered Tripoli on a 
variety of fronts:

An ambitious program to /privatize banks and develop the nascent 
financial sector is underway... /Structural reforms in other areas have 
progressed. The passing in early 2010 of a number of far-reaching laws 
bodes well for /fostering private sector development and attracting 
foreign direct investment/... Executive Directors agreed with the thrust 
of the staff appraisal. They welcomed Libya's strong macroeconomic 
performance and the progress on /enhancing the role of the private 
sector/ and supporting growth in the non-oil economy. The fiscal and 
external balances remain in substantial surplus and are expected to 
strengthen further over the medium term, and the outlook for Libya's 
economy remains favorable (emphasis added).




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