Tripoli, 14 October:
The Cairo-based Arab Contractors Company, one of Egypt’s biggest corporations, is expected to sign a fresh contract next week . . .[restrict]to restart work on a road project in Ghadames. According to a company official in Tripoli, the project had originally been awarded and work started before the revolution but was then put on hold.
Work on a second suspended road project, in Tobruk, remains on hold, the spokesman said. Unlike in Ghadames, where Arab Contractors suffered minimal loss during the revolution — just one car stolen — virtually all the equipment disappeared in Tobruk. The company has called on the local council, the government and the roads and bridges organisation to pay for the losses and this is being discussed, according to the spokesman. However, until the issue is resolved, work cannot be restarted, he said.
In July, Arab Contractors opened a new office in Tripoli specifically to deal with reactivating its contracts in Libya and bid for new ones. In August, the Deputy Chairman, Effat Abdullah, was reported saying that the company was bidding for over $1 billion-worth of projects through the Tripoli office. The projects were said to include infrastructure, bridges, pipe installation, refineries, ports and general contracting. In fact, this has turned out to be more of a wish list than a story of bids submitted.
A company has since said that it has not received any requests from Libya in regard to new projects nor submitted any offers. The spokesman has now confirmed this, saying that nothing apart from the two past projects is being discussed at present.
The Libyan authorities have already said they will give priority to local Libyan construction companies.