PARIS - British Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Thursday he sought a closer trade relationship between Libya and Europe and said Britain would not miss out on its share of contracts.
"We do want Libya and indeed the whole of North Africa to have a closer economic and trading relationship with the whole of Europe," Hague told reporters at the British ambassador's residence in Paris ahead of international talks on Libya.
Asked about reports that Italian and French companies were jockeying for position ahead of Britain to get involved in the reconstruction of Libya, Hague said: "We won't be left behind."
Regarding Syria, Hague said there was a "real prospect" that the European Union would impose sanctions on the sale of Syrian oil. The issue was expected to be discussed at a meeting of European foreign ministers in Poland over the weekend, he said.