Libya restarts production, exports from country’s largest oil field

Hatem Mohareb and Salma El Wardany, Bloomberg January 22, 2024

(Bloomberg) – Libya is restarting oil exports and production from its largest oil field after it had been shuttered for about three weeks.

Libya's Sharara oil field

Production at Sharara, which previously pumped about 270,000 bpd, will resume and force majeure, a clause in contracts allowing deliveries to be suspended, will be lifted, the OPEC country’s state-run National Oil Corp. said in a statement.

The restart came after the government in Tripoli agreed to implement most of the demands from protesters, Deputy Prime Minister Ramadan Boujannah told Libya’s Al-Ahrar TV earlier Sunday.

Sharara’s closure cut Libya’s oil production to below 1 MMbpd for the first time in months.

Operations at Sharara — run by a joint venture between NOC, Spain’s Repsol SA, France’s TotalEnergies SE, Austria’s OMV AG and Norway’s Equinor ASA — had been stopped by protesters calling for social and economic reforms including jobs, better services and a new refinery.

Libya’s energy facilities have been the focus of conflict since the fall of dictator Moammar Al Qaddafi in 2011, with armed factions shutting down oil output to press for political and economic demands. The North African nation managed to keep production stable at around 1.2 MMbpd for most of the last year.

Lead image source: TotalEnergies

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