Aims To Modernize Libya's Aircraft Fleet
AgustaWestland and the Libyan Company for Aviation Industry
announced Tuesday they have signed an agreement to form a joint
venture called the Libyan Italian Advanced Technology Company
(LIATEC). The joint-venture will be half-owned by the Libyan
Company for Aviation Industry, with Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland
holding 25 percent each.
According to LIATEC representatives, under terms of the deal the
two Italian shareholders will provide training, technology and
equipment to the once-troublesome Mediterranean country (while
diplomatic relationships have warmed considerably in recent years,
it wasn't all that long ago that Libya openly supported terrorism),
while the Libyan shareholder will mainly invest in infrastructure,
plant and local marketing activities.
LIATEC's headquarters have been set up in Tripoli. Utilizing
start-up funds made available by all partners, the company will
invest in the aeronautics technology and electronics systems of
most interest to Libya.
According to the company's development plan, the first task will
be to develop the capacity necessary to make Libya's aircraft fleet
more efficient, as well as modernizing Libya's existing fleets of
helicopters and aircraft.
To that end, AgustaWestland also announced Tuesday the sale of
ten A109 Power helicopters (file photo of type, below) for the
Libyan border patrol, as part of a program that is worth a total
EUR 80 million. The price includes equipment and services needed to
train operators of the helicopters.
To ensure that future fleets are maintained, the consortium will
also set up a training center open to all Libyan flight and
maintenance personnel, as well as a production assembly line in
LIATEC will also operate as a supplier of Libyan agencies
responsible for procuring helicopters, medium-sized and light
aircraft, electronics security systems and land-based
infrastructure. The company will have commercial rights to sell
helicopters assembled locally in a number of African countries.
"This technological and industrial co-operation will provide a
great boost to the Libyan economy, and will in particular offer
more employment opportunities to the young graduates of the
country's technical colleges and universities," said LIATEC
The deliveries of the first two A109s are expected at the end of
2006, and the beginning of 2007.