Russian companies to be thrown out of Libya

The collapse of Muammar Gaddafi's regime will close many projects for Russian companies in Libya, the head of the Russian-Libyan Business Council, Aram Shegunts said. Such large companies as Gazprom, Gazpromneft, Tatneft and Russian Railways are currently working in the war-torn country. All of those companies made multi-million investments in their Libyan project.

"We have lost Libya completely. Our companies won't be given the green light to work there. If anyone thinks otherwise they are wrong. Our companies will lose everything there because NATO will prevent them from doing their business in Libya," Shegunts told Reuters.

In the meantime, according to Izvestia newspaper, the head of the Kremlin administration Sergei Naryshkin visited Paris at the end of July. According to the newspaper, the Russian official discussed the prospects for the Russian companies during the post-Gaddafi period in Libya.

Oil giant Tatneft has already drilled a number of wells in Gadames - the territory where as much as 55 tons of oil is produced daily. Tatneft has four licensed areas totaling 18 m2 in Gadames and Sirt.

Gazpromneft intended to partake in the development of Elephant deposit. The daily volume of oil production in the field makes up 18,300 tons, whereas the reserves of the oil field are estimated at 210 million tons. The Russian company was supposed to receive the share of Italy's Eni in the project. The deal is evaluated at $180 million.

Russian Railways had a project in Libya to build Sirt-Benghazi rapid-speed railway 500 kilometers long. The contract was signed in 2008, but the company would like to continue the work in the country after the situation there becomes stable.

It is worthy of note that Russian companies were literally thrown out of Iraq after the occupation of the country. It brings up the idea that the story may repeat itself again in Libya. The new Iraqi government, for example, terminated the agreements with Lukoil about the development of Qurna 2 field. The Russian company had to spend a lot to return to the country.

As for the Russian defense industry, the country has already lost $4 billion because of the sanctions imposed against Libya, Anatoly Isaikin, the general director of Rosoboronexport said.

Several days before the resolution of the UN Security Council, Russia and Libya signed a 600-million-euro contract for the delivery of Bal anti-ship missile complexes. The contract for the delivery of six Yak-130 training aircraft was frozen.

Sergey Nikolaev.

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Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov