TRIPOLI - Libya will import electricity from Egypt and Tunisia and rent generators as it struggles with power outages that have plunged its main cities into darkness, the Tripoli-based prime minister said.
Four years of fighting following the ousting of leader Muammar Gaddafi has hobbled Libya's oil industry and power grid, with damaged plants and foreign firms reluctant to deliver spare parts needed to repair them.
Outages in the capital Tripoli lasting up to 18 hours a day have forced the country's biggest steel company to close as well as dozens of bakeries and petrol stations.
The blackouts are even worse in the east where the main city of Benghazi has seen only sporadic power in the past few days, shutting down the mobile phone network for much of the day.
Libya will get 250 megawatts (MW) (0.25 gigawatts GW) of electricity from neighboring Tunisia and 75 MW from Egypt, Khalifa al-Ghwell told a televised news conference on Tuesday.
Al-Ghwell said his government had also rented generators with a capacity of 240 MW, adding that the closure of steel firm Lisco would save 100 MW which will be fed into the Tripoli grid.