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Fitzpatrick in talks over Angola deal

FITZPATRICK is negotiating an £80 million deal to refurbish the main airport and hospital in war-torn Angola.

The firm has been talking to the African country's Government of National Unity and Reconciliation for six months about the work in the capital Luanda.

Managing director of Fitzpatrick's international division Bernard Woodman said: 'Angola has got oil reserves, which helps with the funding.'

Civil war has claimed 1.5 million lives in the country since it gained independence from Portugal in 1975. Last year, a cease fire was agreed after the death of rebel leader Jonas Savimbi.

The Export Credits Guarantee Department provides limited cover for Angola under its 'good projects in difficult markets' policy. This means schemes must have a social and economic benefit, as well as be viable.

In the next month Fitzpatrick is hoping to wrap up a £60 million deal in another west African country, Equatorial Guinea, after a year of negotiations.

The scheme is for a road to link the capital, Malabo, with the country's airport.