Guidance

Trade sanctions on Libya

Libya is subject to an arms embargo, transit control and other restrictions.

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There are a number of restrictive measures imposed against Libya. The measures include those imposed by UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs) 1970 (2011), 1973(2011), 2009(2011), 2095 (2013) and 2174 (2014) as well as those by the European Union. They are included in EU Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1333 and Council Regulation (EU) 2016/44.

Arms embargo

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer military goods and technology to Libya, or to other destinations where the items are ultimately for use in Libya. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related technical assistance, financing and financial assistance, and brokering services. It is also prohibited to provide technical assistance as well as financing and financial assistance related to the provision of armed mercenary personnel in Libya.

It is also prohibited to procure these items from Libya, whether or not they originate in Libya.

Equipment which might be used for internal repression

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer goods and technology which might be used for internal repression to Libya, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Libya. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related technical assistance, as well as financing and financial assistance. It is also prohibited to purchase, import or transport these items from Libya, whether or not they originate in Libya.

Equipment which could be used for the smuggling of migrants and trafficking in human beings

A prior authorisation is required to export, sell, supply or transfer certain marine equipment which could be used for the smuggling of migrants, as listed in Annex VII of Council Regulation (EU) 2016/44 to Libya, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Libya. There are also prohibitions on related technical assistance, financing and financial assistance, and brokering services.

Exceptions

Exceptions and licences may be available regarding the above measures. These are set out in Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1333 and Council Regulation EU) 2016/44.

Transit control

Military items transiting the UK are still regarded as being exported when they leave the country and are therefore subject to control. Article 17 of the Export Control Order 2008 includes a transit and transhipment exception meaning that in many situations a licence is not required. This exception does not apply to goods destined for Libya, meaning that a licence is required to transit goods through the UK or to tranship them in the UK with a view to re-exportation to Libya.

Import restrictions

Contact the Import Licensing Branch for guidance on import licensing.

Financial sanctions

For information on any relevant financial sanctions, contact the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation.

Apply for an export licence through the online export licensing system managed by the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU).

ECJU contact details

Helpline

Contact the helpline for general queries about strategic export licensing.

Export Control Joint Unit
2nd floor 
3 Whitehall Place
London
SW1A 2AW

Email: exportcontrol.help@trade.gov.uk

Telephone: 020 7215 4594

Notices to exporters

Notices to exporters from the ECJU contain important information about:

  • amendments to open general export licences
  • changes to the list of controlled goods
  • updates on legislation and sanctions

Sign up to receive email alerts to notices to exporters.

Published 13 August 2012
Last updated 20 April 2017 + show all updates
  1. Link to EU council decision updated.
  2. Included links to financial sanctions content on GOV.UK
  3. First published.