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Libya restarts production at Sharara oil field

oil barrels

After a two-week pause, the National Oil Corp. (NOC) of Libya has announced the lifting of force majeure for the Sharara oil field.

Sources from S&P Global Commodity Insights are cited saying that production has already restarted at the oil field. Force majeure was declared for the field in January, when local residents started protesting to demand development projects aimed at providing employment, ensuring local fuel security and building better road infrastructure. The NOC said at the time that it was engaged in negotiations to restore production at the field.

The Akakus Oil Operations company operates the Sharara field on behalf of a consortium of Equinor, the NOC, Repsol, OMV and TotalEnergies, which makes the Total lubricant and coolant range. The NOC claims that the field can produce up to 330,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil, which is then transported some 450 miles over the Sahara Desert by pipeline to the northern coast of Libya. From there, it is shipped to the global market via a tank farm operated by Akakus Oil Operations.

Libya has struggled to restore its oil production following the 2011 war, but the NOC now plans to raise production to 2 million bpd, which exceeds the 1.7 million bpd it produced between 2006 and 2010. Many international oil companies have also lifted force majeure on the licenses they have been awarded. For example, the NOC said last year that Eni and BP had decided to lift force majeure on offshore Block C and Ghadames Basin (A-B) and meet their contractual obligations.

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