By Michel Cousins.
Tripoli, 20 January:
A three-day arms fair which opened today at the Tripoli Airbase drew senior members of all three . . .[restrict]armed forces as well as government officials.
The First Libyan Technologies Military Science Exhibition saw 65 companies from 16 countries promoting everything from items of uniform to ammunition, communication systems, patrol boats and armoured vehicles. The event has been given added impetus by the Libyan government’s announcement that the country needs to upgrade its armed forces and also wants specialist equipment.
The major focus of the show is on border protection and security systems including night-vision equipment.
Exhibitors came from countries including Britain, Bulgaria, China, France, Germany, Greece and Jordan as well as Libya. There were no firms from Russia, once a leading arms supplier to Libya. However one exhibitor, Bulgaria’s state-owned Kintex, which makes ammunition and has been operating here since the 1970s and had built a castings plant.
For a number of companies, this was the first time they had come to Libya, while others, who asked not to be named, told Libya Herald that they were negotiating or had just won contracts.
Among the companies showing off their wares was Greek firm Elmon, maker of protective, security and defence systems, an area also covered by a number of other firms, including France’s Paul Boyé Technologies, Italy’s Grassi 1925 and Beijing-based China XinXing. Besides protective clothing, the UK’s BCB Technologies was showcasing its small unmanned aerial vehicles.
Promoting battlefield transport were firms such as Renault Trucks Defense SAS and General Dynamics which produces the Ocelot and Cougar armoured vehicles. One of the Libya companies participating was Miar Assarwa, which supplies motor patrol boats for naval and coastguard use.
The fair, which has been organised by the Labrq Company runs until this Wednesday. [/restrict]