UK Trade Delegation Arrives in Libya: Understanding Libyan Culture is Key

Matthew MacLachlan

18 Jan 2013

One year on from the fall of the Gaddafi regime in Libya, the country is experiencing a flourish of business activity, as international trade delegation after international trade delegation arrive with the aim of winning business for their respective countries. The UK is no different with a high level trade delegation, led by Lord Marland, the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy and Chair of the British Business Ambassadors’ Network, in Tripoli this week. In an article in the Telegraph, Lord Marland believes firmly that British businesses are well placed to help Libya emerge from decades of lack of investment.

Significant opportunities exist for multinational organisations in the fields of oil, mining, banking and finance, construction, transport, telecommunication, retail, healthcare, education, agriculture and tourism. However, any organisation doing business in Libya must demonstrate patience and be in it for the long term. Libya is a country of traditions, where relationships and understanding your counterparts mean everything and where understanding Libyan business and social culture will dramatically increase your chances of success.

Lord Marland and his team have found a country which maintains a huge regard for Great Britain. Meetings conducted over cups of sweet mint tea with ministers, many of whom were educated at British Universities, have been encouraging with many opportunities to be explored.

Lord Marland’s account demonstrates that cultural awareness training to prepare for and address the often hidden and implicit values of Libyan culture that drive social and business behaviour will give you and your organisation the competitive edge when doing business in Libya.

 



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