Libya's UN-backed Prime Minister Fayez Serraj on Thursday granted permission to Italian companies to start rebuilding the Tripoli International Airport.
Serraj launched the project during a ceremony attended by Libyan officials, Italian Ambassador to Libya Giuseppe Perrone, and representatives of the executing companies.
"We have a great ambition for this airport and other Libyan airports to be transit stations for Africa and Europe, and a pillar of tourist activity. Our country has a geographically distinct location and unexploited tourist wealth," he said.
The announcement to grant the building permission is the beginning to achieve such ambition, which requires work and effort, he added.
In July 2017, Libya signed a 79-million-euro (92.2-million-U.S. dollar) contract with a consortium of Italian companies to rebuild the international airport in the capital Tripoli.
The airport has been closed since 2014 due to armed conflict between rival militias, which created the current political division in the northern African country.