In November and December 2020, 571,464 migrants from over 41 nationalities were identified in all 100 Libyan municipalities during Round 34 of DTM data collection. During the reporting period, the number of migrants in Libya remained fairly stable (571,464 compared to 574,146 in Sep-Oct 2020) after substantial decreases in previous rounds following the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. Overall, IOM estimates that more than 80,000 migrants left Libya since the start of the pandemic, mainly to neighbouring countries.
Despite the pandemic, migration patterns in Libya continue to be influenced heavily by geographical proximity and historical ties that extend beyond the boundaries of present-day Libya. Two thirds of migrants are from neighbouring countries: Niger (20%), Egypt (18%), Chad (15%) and Sudan (15%). A recent DTM study on migrants’ social networks highlighted that the majority of migrants reported having friends in Libya prior to migrating (54%) while a quarter had family (24%) and a third acquaintances (33%). However, a greater proportion of migrants from neighbouring countries reported having friends in Libya prior to departure than migrants from the Middle East, East and Horn of Africa and Southern Asia.