Eni-operated Libyan oil field said to reopen after two-year halt

Saleh Sarrar 4/20/2017

TRIPOLI (Bloomberg) -- Libya’s El-Feel oil field, operated by a venture between Eni SpA and the state producer, reopened after a two-year halt in operations that crimped the OPEC nation’s output, according to a person familiar with the situation.

The field, also known as Elephant, re-opened on Wednesday, said the person, who asked not to be identified because of a lack of authorization to speak to media. It hasn’t resumed pumping oil yet because of an electricity outage, Petroleum Facilities Guard Brigadier Idris Bukhamada said by phone. Authorities are working to resolve the power stoppage soon, he said.

El-Feel in western Libya was due to re-open in December, but guards demanding benefits prevented that from happening, National Oil Corp. said in January. The deposit, which was closed since April 2015, has an output capacity of 80,000 bopd, according to an NOC statement posted on the company’s website on April 16.

A revival in Libya’s production will put pressure on the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and other major producers that agreed last year to cut output to rein in a glut and shore up prices. The North African nation, exempted from OPEC’s cuts because of its internal strife, was producing 490,000 bopd as of April 11, less than a third of the 1.6 million it pumped before a 2011 uprising.

Libya, with Africa’s largest oil reserves, is struggling to recover from years of conflict between rival governments and militias. It’s targeting production of about 1.2 million bbl by the end of 2017, NOC Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said on Dec. 21.


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