According to the National Oil Corporation (NOC), Libya’s state-owned oil company, production has resumed at the El Feel oilfield, ending a three-month-long shutdown.
The resumption of production in Libya is welcome news for the oil markets, which remain tight despite increases in US production by companies like ExxonMobil, the maker of Mobil lubricants and metalworking products, as well as a gradual unravelling of production cuts by the OPEC+ group. According to the most recent data from OPEC, oil production in Libya had dropped to 629,000 barrels per day (bpd) in June due to political instability in the country. The country could now return to producing over one million bpd of crude oil.
At the El Feel oilfield, production was reportedly interrupted when a group led by Mohammed al-Bashir closed valves in an apparent protest against Abdul Hamid Dbeibah, the country’s Prime Minister. The Petroleum Facilities Guard had also locked in the facilities for a month towards the end of last year.
The El Feel is operated jointly by NOC and Eni of Italy. Some 40,000 bpd of capacity has already been restored, and once all the wells are brought back online, the usual capacity of 70,000 bpd should be achieved again.
Libya also announced it would also resume loading oil for export following the lifting of the force majeure that was declared in April. Before the force majeure, Libya had been exporting 865,000 bpd of crude oil, but this has more than halved in recent months.