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Plans begin for Libya's economic future

July 6, 2004 at 6:47 PM

TRIPOLI, Libya, July 6 (UPI) -- U.S. and British economists met in Tripoli with the Libyan counterparts to discuss options for the country's economy, a Massachusetts company reports.

During the two-day conference that took place in the Libyan capital last week, Prime Minister Shurki Ghanem convened with Western economic academics and private consulting firms to focus on priorities for Libya's social and economic future.

"Libya is in a position to play a new strategic role in the global oil industry and in the rapidly-growing global gas business," said Daniel Yergin, chairmen of Cambridge Energy Research Association, an American natural gas, oil and electric power consulting firm.

In 2002, the CIA estimated Libya's oil-proven reserves to be at 29.75 billion barrels. Its natural gas-proven reserves were estimated at 1.321 trillion cubic meters.

U.N. sanctions on Libya were lifted in 2003 and the country renounced all weapons of mass destruction.

Michael Porter of the Harvard Business School said the fundamental goal of the conference was help move the economy steadily forward.

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