Brussels, 06 Sep 2004
During a visit to Tripoli on 4 and 5 September, Commissioner Busquin discussed with Libyan authorities the potential mutual benefits for Libya and the EU in establishing scientific and technological co-operation, once Libya would have joined the Barcelona process for co-operation between the EU and the Mediterranean countries. In a series of discussions with the secretary of Foreign Affairs at the General People's Congress and the government ministers in charge of co-operation and agriculture, emphasis was put on the mutual scientific and economic benefits of R&D co-operation. Joint inititiatives could cover genomics and veterinary research on Libyan cattle, including goats and camels. Scientists believe camel milk has ecomomic and health potential given its low allergic characteristics, possibly making it a valid alternative to cow's milk. Research on the breeding and selection of camels holds an interest for large parts of Africa. Another potential area for co-operation in R&D relates to solar energy, which is in abundant supply in Libya and neighbouring countries. Commissioner Busquin invited a Libyan expert to attend the launch of a technology platform on photovoltaics in Brussels on 28 September.