U.S. Business Leaders Arrive in Libya for Five-Day Trade and Investment
Delegation Visit, Meetings with Senior Libyan Government Officials
Washington, DC – Members of the U.S.-Libya Business Association (USLBA) arrived yesterday in Libya to begin a five-day trade and investment delegation visit. The delegation includes 37 representatives of 20 U.S. companies and organizations, including A-T Solutions, BAE Systems, The Boeing Company, ConocoPhillips Libya Waha, LTD, Daniel J. Edelman,
Inc., Dow Chemical, ExxonMobil, FARMCO (Valmont Irrigation), Hess Corporation, Hill International, General Electric, the Institute of International Education, Marathon Oil Corporation, Motorola Solutions, NSI – Nasa Services International, Parsons, RMA Global Fleet Sales, the Sandi Group and WorkingBuildings, LLC. The group represents a wide range of U.S.
industry sectors, including healthcare, education administration, training, energy, construction, logistics, infrastructure, construction support, vehicles and equipment, transportation, public safety, agriculture, public relations and telecommunications. They are joined by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Jose Fernandez and U.S. Ambassador to Libya Gene Cretz.
“We are very grateful to U.S. Ambassador Gene Cretz and the entire U.S. Embassy team in Libya,” said USLBA Executive Director Chuck Dittrich. “Ambassador Cretz has been a driving force in involving the U.S. private sector in the rebuilding of Libya. Without his leadership and the dedication of his team, this delegation visit would not have been possible. We are excited to be here and look forward to a very productive week.” While in Libya, the delegation will travel to Tripoli and Benghazi to meet with senior Libyan national and local government officials, including Prime Minister Abdurrahim El-Keib. The delegation will participate in events with private business groups from Tripoli, Misurata and Benghazi to discuss national priorities in the rebuilding of the country. They will also participate in two major trade shows for the oil and gas and infrastructure industries, which are taking place in Tripoli.
“While much press coverage about Libya is focused on the historic political transition to representative government now underway, it ignores the underlying fact that Libya is already in the process of building a new economy focused on the nation’s private sector,” said Dittrich. “Among the keys to generating and sustaining private sector growth, job creation and
diversifying the economy is putting in place institutions and policies focused on governance, transparency, accountability, rule of law, property rights and access to finance.”
“The challenge will be to create government institutions that allow an independent business community to keep growing to create the jobs necessary to move from an economy that is still reliant on public subsidies,” Dittrich continued. “While this reality must be confronted, there is an energy and a true sense of optimism that day by day, things are moving forward.”
With nearly seven million consumers and its strategic position for trade along the Mediterranean coastline, Libya has the potential to become an important economic partner for U.S. companies.
In the short term, in addition to the energy sector, the country offers opportunities for companies in the vocational training, healthcare and infrastructure sectors, and in the long term, opportunities in tourism development, financial services and banking, construction, agriculture and the digital economy.
“Among all of those with whom we’ve had an opportunity to meet here in Libya, we’ve found that American technology, entrepreneurship and creativity are met with a warm welcome,” said Dittrich. “Long-term partnerships and collaborative new ventures, especially among emerging young business leaders in Libya are being formed, and we see vast opportunities to strengthen U.S.-Libya economic ties now and in the future.”
The U.S.-Libya Business Association is the only member-based U.S. trade association focusing on the United States
and Libya. It was incorporated in 2005 as a result of the resumption of U.S.-Libya diplomatic and commercial relations, to enhance the U.S.-Libya relationship, educate the public about the importance of U.S.-Libya trade, and facilitate the commercial and diplomatic dialogue between the two countries. Its founders believe that the bonds forged by trade and investment form the groundwork for an improved and long-lasting bilateral relationship. For more information, visit www.us-lba.org.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Jennifer Cummings
April 22, 2012 + 202-822-9491