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Libya Cash & Markets WG - Libya Joint Market Monitoring Initiative (JMMI) - September 2017 Factsheet

Subject/Objective: 
In an effort to better understand market dynamics in Libya, the Joint Market Monitoring Initiative (JMMI) was initiated by the Libya Cash & Markets Working Group (CMWG). The initiative is guided by the CMWG Markets Taskforce, led by REACH and supported by the CMWG members.
Methodology: 
Data collection for the JMMI occurs on a monthly basis, with associated factsheets and datasets published and distributed after every round. The fourth round of data collection for the JMMI was conducted between 4 and 11 September 2017, during which enumerators from 5 participating agencies (ACTED, DRC, Mercy Corps, WFP & REACH) gathered price data from 130 individual shops in 10 urban areas across Libya, namely in Benghazi, Brak, Derna, Gharyan, Nalut, Sebha, Sirte, Tripoli, Zintan and Zliten. Field staff familiar with the local market conditions identified shops representative of the general price level in their respective location. Assessed shops include supermarkets, bakeries, vegetable sellers and butchers, as well as central markets. Per assessed item, at least four prices were collected within each location. In line with the purpose of the JMMI, only the price of the lowest available brand was recorded for each item. Enumerators were trained on methodology and tools by REACH. Data collection was conducted through the KoBo mobile application. Following data collection, REACH compiled and cleaned all partner data, normalising prices and cross-checking outliers.
Key findings: 
Food items As in the previous two rounds, food prices were the highest in Derna, closely followed by Zliten and Sebha. In Zliten, a newly added location, the high food price level was largely driven by elevated prices for black and green tea, while the prices of most other items were more in line with the country medians. In Benghazi, which was also newly added to the JMMI, food prices were the lowest of all assessed locations. The overall price median for tomatoes increased by 33%, which is likely due to seasonal factors. Towards winter, the production of tomatoes tends to shift from open fields to greenhouses, which are more costly to operate. This is likely to further drive prices upwards in the coming months. NFI prices have been volatile Prices of non-food items have been particularly volatile since August. In many locations, large fluctuations of the prices of hygiene items have been registered. Overall, NFI prices have risen, particularly in Brak (+30%), Gharyan (+28%) and Zintan (+32%). The overall median price of toothbrushes has increased by 20% since August. Military encirclement of Derna continues A temporary lift of the road blockage before the Eid holidays (30 August to 1 September) allowed traders in Derna to restock on fresh food items and clothes. Some other items have reportedly been brought into the city through informal routes. Medicine and fuel supplies were not allowed to pass the checkpoints at the entrance of the city. While bread, eggs and several vegetables were unavailable during the August data collection round, all goods were generally found to be available in early September. However, there was a shortage of wheat flour; all but one of the assessed shops had run out of their stocks. Some bakeries remained closed because of the lack of wheat flour and fuel. Food (+2%) and NFI (+6%) prices in Derna rose since August. With supply chains cut off, shortages and further price hikes may be registered in the near future. Reported shortages Besides wheat flour in Derna, no shortages of essential food and non-food items were reported in the assessed locations. Exchange rates have remained stable Since August, the Libyan dinar has slightly depreciated against the US dollar and the Euro on the parallel market in Tripoli, while the official exchange rate has decreased marginally.
Assessment Report: 
Publicly Available
Assessment Data: 
Publicly Available
Contact(s): 
Charlie Rapoport
rapop@unhcr.org
Webspace(s): 
Assessment Date(s): 
04 Sep 2017 to 11 Sep 2017
Frequency: 
Monthly
Status: 
Report completed
Population Type(s): 
All affected population
Cluster(s)/Sector(s): 
Leading/Coordinating Organization(s): 
REACH Initiative
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
Participating Organization(s): 
Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development
Danish Refugee Council
Mercy Corps
World Food Programme
Location(s): 
Libya
Theme(s): 
Cash Transfer Programming
Market Assessment