Building Forward Better

Libya – About the country


The climatic conditions of Libya are influenced by the Mediterranean Sea to the North and the Sahara Desert to the South, resulting in highly diversified agro-climatic zones throughout the country. Annual rainfall is extremely low, with about 93 percent of the land surface receiving less than 100 mm/year.

Water resources

With very limited perennial water resources, Libya relies almost completely on non-renewable, fossil, groundwater resources, with no surface water or groundwater entering the country. The total renewable water resources are estimated around 111.5 m3/year per capita in 2015, Libya being thus well under the absolute water scarcity threshold of 500 m3/year per capita.

Land resources and agriculture

In 2008, agriculture contributed 1.9 percent to the national GDP and it regularly employs around 6 percent of the active population. Most agriculturally productive land is limited to a strip along the Mediterranean Sea, where most rain falls. The cultivated area is estimated at about 2 million ha which is 1 percent of the total area of the country. Permanent pastures account for 13.3 million ha, annual crops for 1.72 million ha and permanent crops for only 0.34 million ha in 2013.

For more information and country statistics, please visit FAO Aquastat – Libya and FAO Country profile – Libya.