Libya’s Saraj is Turkey’s ‘milk cow’: Asking for $2.7bln for work done before 2011

Turkey plans to sign a preliminary agreement on compensation of $ 2.7 billion for work it had done in Libya before the 2011 civil war by February, a sector official said, seeking to resume his business. affected by conflicts.

Turkish companies had been operating in Libya for some time, but their jobs there were marred by unrest when the rebels overthrew Muammar Gaddafi nine years ago and were again hit by the ongoing fighting.

One major obstacle to re-investing was the uncertainty about unpaid debts. Now Muzaffer Aksoy, chairman of the Turkey – Libya Chamber of Commerce, said the two countries are approaching the signing of a MoU.

“The work for the MoU on the old contracts is coming to an end. The problems of unpaid debts, allowances and a letter of guarantee will be resolved, ā€¯Aksoy told Reuters in an interview.

The agreement, due to be signed this month or in February, will include a $ 1 billion letter of guarantee, $ 500 million for machinery and equipment damage and $ 1.2 billion in unpaid debts, he added.

As programs in Libya have been suspended because of the fighting, the delayed payments to Turkish contractors in Libya amount to $ 16 billion, including $ 400-500 million for projects that have not yet started, Aksoy added.

He argued that, despite the disruption, trade between Libya and Turkey remains on the rise, with Turkish exports reaching $ 2 billion a year and imports up to $ 350 million, Aksoy said. However, Turkish contractors with programs in Libya have been unable to travel to that country since April because of the fighting.

“New contracts were signed: programs such as power stations, housing, business centers. There have been signatures of letters of guarantee on some of them. But they haven’t been able to go for safety reasons since April,” Aksoy said.