19 March 2014 14:36

Debt-ridden Cyprus wants strife-torn Libya to pay back an estimated €3.6 million it owes since the days of deposed leader Muammar Gaddafi.
But Nicosia chooses to take the diplomatic path, according to a letter by the Commerce Ministry sent to the House of Representatives this week.
"In cooperation with the Foreign Ministry, we will seek to receive the owed amount of €3,667,282 from the new government of Libya," it said.
The loan should have been paid back by March 2011 in accordance with an agreement reached with the Gaddafi regime.
Gaddafi's death and the political changes in the oil-rich country have complicated matters even more.  The debts - which date back in the 1980s - were the result of business and trade transactions between Cypriot construction companies and Libya.
Most of the money owed to the Cyprus government was for compensation paid by the exports protection service to Cypriot businesspeople fooled by the Gaddafi regime.
An initial agreement was signed on May 12, 2010 for Libya's overall debt settlement towards Cyprus.   A major Cypriot construction company that had a dispute with the Libyan government is Joannou & Paraskevaides.


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