Libya's biggest oil field back up as pipeline reopens to port

By Saleh Sarrar and Salma El Wardany on 8/22/2017

DUBAI and CAIRO (Bloomberg) -- Libya’s biggest oil field is set to boost production after the pipeline to an export terminal was reopened following three days of forced disruption.

Force majeure on Sharara crude exports from the Zawiya terminal is lifted, the state-run National Oil Corp. said Tuesday in a statement. Force majeure, a legal status protecting a party from liability if it can’t fulfill a contract for reasons beyond its control, had been declared on Saturday. The NOC estimated the value of lost production at $40 million.

Sharara has experienced several brief shutdowns caused by different groups this year. The oil field closed for two days in June due to a protest by workers there. Pumping was interrupted for several hours earlier this month after armed protesters shut some facilities. Production was 230,000 bopd, a person familiar with the situation said at the time. In April, the NOC declared force majeure at Zawiya after the pipeline stopped operating.

Libya is reviving its oil production and exports in spite of continuing political uncertainty. In July, crude production was at a four-year high and exports were the most in three years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. While the expansion has helped Libya’s oil-dependent economy, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is trying to cut global supplies. That effort has been undermined by recovering output at OPEC members Libya and Nigeria.

 

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