The Secretary General of OPEC has stated it is too early to decide as and when any production cuts should apply to Libya and Nigeria. Both these countries have experienced challenges to maintaining production levels in recent years.
Speaking to Reuters, Mr. Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General, said:
“[It is] too early to say when production caps could be imposed on Libya and Nigeria, they have a lot of issues to solve.”
This follows the decision at the May meeting in Vienna between OPEC and its non-member partners to extend current production cuts by a further nine months in order to get global inventories back to the five-year average.
At the meeting, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih, who presided over the conference, expressed it was inappropriate to apply cuts to Nigeria and Libya by saying:
“The two countries are still well below the expected output quota, it is in our interest to be friendly and brotherly, and exempt them so that they get the maximum revenue from the amount produced.”
Libya’s oil production has been severely limited in recent years due to ongoing conflict between rival militias and governments. Although production has recovered somewhat, it remains well below the 1.6 million barrels being pumped before the overthrow of Moammar Al Qaddafi.
Nigeria has also experienced lower production due to militant attacks on its oil infrastructure. The Forcados export terminal has been attacked by militants several times, causing Shell, which also makes lubricants like Shell Tonna S3 M 68, to suspend exports through the terminal until recently.