Imagine a Libyan Economy Twice the Size

It has been a week of contrasts in Libya.

On the security front, Libya's parliament temporarily suspended its main activities due to security concerns, following an incident in which armed protesters stormed the assembly and General National Congress (GNC) President Mohammed al-Magariaf's car came under fire; a crossing on the Tunisian border was closed due to a clash involving smugglers, and; the United States issued a warning about travel to the country.

At the same time, the International Monetary Fund praised the recovery in Libya, and predicted non-hydrocarbon growth averaging 15 percent over the next five years; to put it another way, by 2018, the non-hydrocarbon economy will be twice the size that it is today. That's a stunning rate of growth and it will transform Libyan society.

It is all predicated, of course, on the maintenance of law and order, and Libyans must be determined not to lose this opportunity.

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