Supporting municipalities, improving municipal services

Project description

Title: Support for municipalities in Libya
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Co-funded by: European Union
Country: Libya
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Local Governance (MoLG)
Overall term: 2017 to 2020



Libya has been politically and economically unstable since the upheavals of 2011. The internationally recognised Government of National Accord, formed in 2015 through the mediation efforts of the United Nations, has so far been unable to overcome political fragmentation in the country and restore state monopoly on the use of force.

This weakness at the national level has strengthened the decentralised level. Council elections in 97 out of 102 municipalities have granted the local authorities political legitimacy. The municipalities must however deal with the effects of civil war, economic crisis, lack of central government support as well as the problem of people fleeing the country. The administrations often lack the capacity required for systematic municipal development. At the same time, the municipalities are under enormous pressure to provide efficient services for the people in the country - for example, water supply or waste disposal.


Municipal capacity has increased and local authorities are able to provide efficient public services.



The project supports 17 selected Libyan partner municipalities with a total of 1.4 million inhabitants along the main migration routes.

In order to improve the performance of municipal administrations, the project provides training courses for municipal staff in project or financial management. Particular emphasis is therefore placed on exchanges between local and national participants, for example the participation of government officials in joint consultation and planning workshops. This enables the municipalities to make suggestions regarding their needs in dialogue with the national government.

Participatory planning combined with financial and organisational support for projects help improve basic public services. These include water supply and waste disposal, the renovation of sports facilities, and the setting up of child care and youth centres. Training and counselling centres for women as well as sports facilities are also being built or renovated.

The project promotes the local economy. Among other things, GIZ and its partners develop value chains – for example for the marketing and local processing of agricultural products. In order to create as many jobs as possible, the project also supports education and training in employment-intensive sectors such as the textile industry.

Furthermore, the project supports civil society organisations in efforts to include particularly vulnerable population groups, for example orphans, internally displaced people and migrants. To this end it promotes non-profit projects, including youth, sports and cultural events. This also helps reduce conflict between the population groups.

The project is co-financed by the European Union (EU Trust Fund).


Since the start of the project in summer 2017, four advisory workshops and exchange forums between central government institutions, municipal councillors and international experts have been held in Tunis and in Tripoli on decentralisation or the role of municipalities. Participatory processes for municipal development planning are being prepared in 15 municipalities. More than 1,000 citizens have so far participated in planning processes and have jointly identified further steps for urban development in dialogue forums.


Environmental laboratories for testing drinking water and food quality are being set up and equipped in 16 partner municipalities. Training and regular monitoring are the initial steps towards better drinking water quality, from which more than 1 million people are expected to benefit in the future.

Training centres for women are being set up in 10 partner municipalities. They are equipped with sewing machines and equipment for textile processing. 26 trainers have been trained and are expected to train more than 100 women in textile processing annually, including widows, internally displaced people and migrant women.

Two study trips to Tunisia to develop value chains for olives and dates had around 60 participants.

A total of 185 civil society organisations for non-profit projects were identified in 15 partner municipalities. 12 organisations have already received funding to work with particularly vulnerable groups or to promote social cohesion. Training courses are currently under way to prepare for the implementation of the project.

Further information