An Insight into Libya

Map of Libya and the Mediterranean Sea

Some Facts and Statistics about Libya:

Libya has a population of 6.423 million and its land area is about 1,759,540 km square. The currency of Libya is Libyan Dinar. It produces about 1.7 million barrels of oil every day.


Libya is situated in the Northern Africa and the Mediterranean Sea borders it on the north. It shares its borders with Egypt, Sudan, Chad and Niger and Algeria and Tunisia.


The capital of Libya is Tripoli.

Language spoken:

Arabic is spoken in Libya.

Political situation:

After the government of Colonel Gaddafi was toppled, Libyan people still wait for a stable government in the country and there is still much unrest and chaos in the country. The aftermaths of the revolution are still evident in the Libyan society.

Ethnic division of Libya:

Berber and Arabs constitute 97% of the population of Libya whereas the other 3% are foreigners which are in minority including Greeks, Maltese, Italians, Egyptians, Pakistanis, Turks, Indians, and Tunisians.

Religions practiced in Libya:

Almost 97% of the population is Muslim whereas the rest of the population constitutes of minorities.

Muammar Gaddafi

People of Libya and their Customs:

Libyan people belong to the Arab race. They also have a Berber influence. Because of the excavators and oil investors coming to Libya, Libya has also got a community of Europeans and other Arabs like Tunisians and Egyptians as these countries are the neighbours of Libya and it is not unusual that of the people of these countries come to Libya to earn their living.

The Libyan people are warm and loving. They like to greet and shake hands warmly and it is nice to ask after the other person’s family. Libyan’s like to show their sincerity and affection by inviting the visitor to their place and serve them with food generously. They are hospitable and it is good to bring some gift of nuts or fruit to the home of a Libyan host. Women and elders are treated with respect and women generally prefer to greet with a slight nod instead of shaking hands.

Tripoli is the capital and largest city of Libya

Business etiquettes and rules for meetings:

  • Greet your companions before a business meeting and shake their hands.
  • Ask after the wellbeing of their families.
  • Do not be hasty while discussing business because the Libyan society is bureaucratic and they never rush on decisions. They take their time and consider among themselves before reaching a final agreement. You must wait and not show any impatience.
  • Business cards are acceptable but it is better if you get them printed in Arabic.
  • A certified translator can be of great help for the concerned parties.
  • It is a cultural norm to agree to someone’s ideas or opinions just for the sake of it, for an Arab will never let you lose face and the same goes for him too. You must be very cautious about refusing or negating something point-blank. It can cause resentment.
  • Connections and links could go a long way and could be beneficial in the Libyan society.

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