Libya: Discovering Muayyad al-Shabani who opened a pottery workshop in Ghariane
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Denys Bédarride
Saturday 26 March 2022 Last update on Saturday, March 26, 2022 At 5:00 AM

A graduate in physics, Muayyad al-Shabani eventually turned to the pottery market. He intends to revalorize this activity which has declined over the years, by using online platforms.

In Ghariane, a city located in the northwest of Libya, Muayyad al-Shabani opened a workshop for the manufacture of pottery items. It has invested in packaging machines that ensure that the products arrive intact at their recipients. Dishes, jugs, pitchers, tajines, enamelled flower pots decorated with traditional hand-painted designs, there is a wide variety of utilitarian objects.

On AFP, Muayyad al-Shabani confides that he obtained a university degree in physics, but finally turned to pottery after facing the sluggishness of the national job market. To ensure orders, he puts his business strategy on social networks such as Instagram and Facebook, where he sells his products. The money is withdrawn and given to the trader by people traveling to Tripoli.

Its objective is to find a place in a market without borders and resist competition from pottery items imported from China, Turkey and neighboring countries.

In this part of the country, pottery has long been a thriving business. But over the years it declined, faced with the inability to keep up with the pace of modernization seen elsewhere. In addition to the shortage of labour, the rise in the price of raw materials, difficult marketing and increasingly tough competition, the context of the country, which has been plagued by conflict since 2011, has slowed down its development.

Traders are thus exposed to logistical challenges, highly protectionist foreign exchange regulations, and an archaic banking system.

Despite everything, Muayyad al-Shabani does not regret his choice, since the articles he posts online are solicited in Great Britain, Germany, Canada and the United States, he assures. Payment is made in Europe.

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