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In a square behind Libya's central bank, black-market dealers, some of them armed, carry small plastic bags filled with dollars and larger ones with dinars in and out of one of many informal exchanges. Traders buy food and other goods from abroad at the official rate and sell them at the unofficial one, pocketing vast profits; others make equally large sums by smuggling out heavily subsidized fuel.The U.N. estimated that about 1.3 million people in Libya need humanitarian assistance this year.Just $2.5 billion of an expected $7.4 billion of credit has been allocated, the trader said, helping knock the dinar from around 8.5 to 9.25 against the dollar on the black market.Libya is struggling to fund food imports and defend its foreign reserves, which the World Bank estimates will stand at $67.5 billion at the end of this year, compared to $123.5 billion in 2012 .Libya managed this year to lift oil production to about 1 million barrels a day, but output is stuck well below the levels before the 2011 uprising that toppled the regime of Moammar Gadhafi.The government has sought to reduce the public salary bill by 5 billion dinars annually, clamping down on abuse by removing some 100,000 people who had been claiming several salaries, according to a Finance Ministry report.
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