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Monday, August 04, 2008

Libya Africa Portfolio Fund for Investment (LAP) Claims $8 Billion in African Assets

Libya Says Its Mission is to Develop Africa as Kenyan.

Speaking at a press conference that was held at Grand Regency Hotel in downtown Nairobi, the president of the Libya Africa Portfolio Fund for Investment (LAP), Mr. Bashir Saleh said Libya is planning to invest over $8 billion in Africa's economic sectors including oil, gas, air transport, tourism and the construction of oil refineries, among others, to help spur Africa's economic development.

Mr. Saleh led a Libyan investment delegation last week to Kenya and met with both President President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

"We already have 30 hotels in Africa. My mission is to develop Africa. This money we are investing here will not go back to Libya. It will remain within the various economies," Mr. Saleh told reporters.

On his part, PM Odinga assured the Libyan delegation that the Kenyan government was still open for more Libyan investments, despite the negative publicity that accompanied Libya's purchase of the Grand Regency Hotel in May.

The visit by Mr. Saleh to Nairobi comes at a time when a parliamentary committee was preparing a report on the process according to which the hotel was sold.

"We bought the hotel in a transparent transaction. We paid US$45million for the hotel in May, 2008. It was a business wise and clean transaction, not political in any way, ours is to ensure that Africa is on course to development," Saleh said.

"You can carry on with investigations, but we assure Kenyans we followed all the procedures as established by law," he added.

Mr. Saleh also explained how Libya had great interest of investing across the continent and had a portfolio worth US$ 8 billion all over Africa - including Kenya, Uganda, South Africa and Morocco.

Inviting Kenyans to welcome their business interests, Bashir said LAP was looking forward to partnerships in Kenya.

"There is no limit for our investments in Kenya," the official from the oil-rich desert country said.

He explained how the barely three-year-old Libyan investment company had aggressively invested in Togo, Guinea and was looking at putting in more monies on the African soil.

"Our strategy is to invest in African countries, with corporations, Governments and private sector initiatives. LAP is just three years old and we are one of the single biggest investors in Africa," he said.He said the company was financing the construction of Kenya-Uganda pipeline too and was working out its shareholding.

Meanwhile, the Nation Monday confirmed that the Libyan Arab African Investment Company Kenya Limited had assumed full control of the hotel and assured workers that nobody would be laid off.

A meeting of senior staff yesterday discussed the new requirements and operational standards under the new management.

The Rest @ Libya Online

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