By Sami Zaptia.
Tripoli, 23 May:
An Austrian trade delegation was in Tripoli this week to visit the Libya Build exhibition. The 19 . . .[restrict]companies were in the construction, engineering, rail, house interiors, chemical, environmental, shipping, legal, and the traffic equipment sectors.
David Bachmann, the Commercial Counsellor, representing Advantage Austria, the Austrian foreign trade organization, welcomed the gathered Austrian company representatives and their Libyan counterparts at a reception last night.
‘We never left Libya, we just took a 6 month holiday’, he remarked.’ There were 26 Austrian companies operating in Libya pre Revolution, and half are already back’, he happily revealed.
‘Austrian companies continue to believe in Libya and Libya’s private sector is doing extraordinarily well’, Mr Bachmann added.
He noted that both nations were doing good trade with one another with the trade balance tilted towards Libya. ‘About 40% of petrol sold in Austria comes from Libya. Austria buys ten times as much from Libya as Libya buys from Austria’.
He hoped more Austrian companies would come and visit Libya and rounded up his welcoming remarks by quoting the now very famous and often cited Sheik of the UAE who said in the 70’s he had hoped his country would one day be like Libya. I hope to cite that quote again Mr Bachmann concluded.
Austria’s newly appointed Ambassador of five months, Franz Horlberger, felt that ‘things were coming back to normal. There is a good omen to work together to re-build Libya. It is a win-win for all to build this country which has a lot of potential’, he felt.
Echoing Mr Bachmann, he reiterated that ‘Austria was back after a 6 month holiday and after visiting the Libya Build exhibition, it gives a signal that life is coming back to normal in Libya’. [/restrict]