At the helm of the Kevalay Queen, which has been stationed in Misrata for a few days and is expected to make the crossing to Tunisia and Turkey, are the Misrati businessman Mustafa al-Majee, the well-connected Turkish entrepreneur Murtaza Karanfil and the Scottish company V.
The Turkish construction conglomerate Albayrak is in talks with the Misrata Free Zone authorities to obtain a port terminal concession held by Bolloré since 2010 in yet another example of how Turkey is tightening its grip on the west Libyan economy.
The Misrata Free Zone, a true state within a state, is both the port of entry to the Libyan market and the bastion of entrepreneurship in the war-torn country. Since September, this potent business hub prized by those fighting for control of the country has been led by Mohsen Sgoutri, whose powerful network allows him to stand up to the Tripoli government and develop his own business diplomacy, especially towards Turkey.
The DEIK-sponsored trade fair to be held in mid-October in Istanbul will open up opportunities for Turkish companies to shore up the government of Fayez Sarraj, with the restoration of the electricity supply in the capital being a particular priority.
The alluring prospect of reconstruction, oil and energy contracts in Libya is attracting the interest of leading Turkish firms, who are taking advantage of the honeymoon between Tripoli and Ankara, an ally of the national unity government in its battle against General Haftar.