Libya Wins $1bn From SocGen, But Cases Highlight Shambolic Economic Governance

Having lost a compensation claim against US firm Goldman Sachs, the Libyan Investment Authority, the country’s sovereign wealth fund has scored a win in the courts against French investment bank Société Générale. Ongoing leadership disputes could make it a hollow victory.

French investment bank Societe Generale has come to a $1bn settlement of a case brought by the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), the country’s sovereign wealth fund. The settlement is a breakthrough for the LIA, which lost a similar case against another investment bank, Goldman Sachs, in October.

But the government’s access to its own sovereign reserves is still complicated by the ongoing political divisions in the country, in particular the disputed leadership of both the LIA and the Central Bank of Libya (CBL).

According to a joint statement issued on 4 May, SocGen and the LIA have signed a settlement deal that “resolves all matters between both parties concerning five financial transactions entered into between 2007 and 2009 that have been the subject of legal action in the English High Court.” Under the terms of the settlement, SocGen will pay the LIA €963m ($1.05bn). All other details of the deal remain confidential ( see box, p15 ). (CONTINUED - 1311 WORDS)