The aftershocks from the violence in Libya are being felt in the Maltese economy.
The island’s exports to the North African nation totalled 85 million euros last year. Malta’s GDP amounts to some 5.6 billion euros
As the unrest shutters Libyan businesses and banks, one local Maltese entrepreneur explained how its impact was being felt across the Mediterranean.
“We have companies which are now desperate because they have made investments in Libya and we also have employees who now have come back to Malta with nothing to do,” said Mario Dobon, the vice-president of the Association of General Retailers and Traders.
“The Libyan Central Bank doesn’t seem to be operating any more, the (commercial) banks dont seem to be operating anymore. A number of Maltese companies have not received their money and we are talking here about millions of euros.”
Malta and Libya have long enjoyed deep commercial ties — Libyan oil is often shipped through the island’s ports.
However, those shipments have ground to a halt amid the continuing violence.