The Italian Civil Aviation Authority has confirmed its participation in the development of air navigation systems in the Tripoli and Misrata regions, "in preparatory activities to reactivate direct communications" between the two countries as part of the "relaunch of aviation in Libya".
The Ministry of Transport's office in Tripoli on Monday witnessed a meeting between the minister of transport of the government of national unity, Mohammed Salem Al-Shahoubi, and an Italian delegation headed by the chief executive of Italian air navigation service provider ENAV, Paolo Simioni.
The Italian aviation authority said in a statement that it will "support the Libyan Aviation Authority in the coming months by replacing damaged equipment in the new control tower at Tripoli's Mitiga International Airport and provide high-tech control towers at Tripoli and Misrata airports, and the Tripoli area Control Center."
The Italian aviation authority confirmed that this process comes "to plan the main activities for the relaunch of Libyan civil aviation and to support the establishment of direct contacts with Italy and Europe," noting that its meeting with the Libyan side was supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Italian Embassy in Tripoli under the management of the Italian ambassador.
Simeoni thanked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, institutions in Rome and Libya, and in particular the Italian ambassador to Tripoli Giuseppe Grimaldi, who pushed for this opportunity.
"Libya is a strategic country for Italian aviation," Simeoni said. Almost all flights between Europe and sub saharan Africa pass through Libya and Italy," he said, noting that "if Libyan airspace remains closed to international air flow, airlines are therefore forced not to cross Italy either."
Simeoni stressed that supporting the Libyan side "means contributing to the growth of commercial activities for the benefit of Italian aviation," also expressing pride in participating in the stabilization process in Libya and also responding to the legitimate expectations of movement for the Libyan people.
The Italian aviation authority has been cooperating continuously with the Libyan authorities since 2011, and in 2016 the two sides signed a memorandum of understanding to train operational personnel, modernize air traffic infrastructure and aviation advisory services.