Libya restarts El-Sharara oil field

09 July 2014

National Oil Corporation says output will be ramped up

Libya has restarted operations at its El-Sharara oil field in the south of the country. A statement released by Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) on 8 July announced that work had resumed and oil production would increase gradually.

El-Sharara has a capacity of 340,000 barrels a day (b/d) and was shut for four months due to protesters making financial and political demands. The return of El-Sharara comes a week after two of Libya’s biggest oil terminals were returned to government control.

It is too early to predict when the ports of Ras Lanuf and Es Sider will be ready to receive oil tankers, according to the statement.

The two oil terminals, with a combined capacity of 560,000 b/d, were handed over to the government by rebels on 2 July, after nearly a year of blockades. Analysts are concerned that the terminals may be damaged as a result of the blockades and will require maintenance before tankers can load.

The NOC lifted force majeure from the Ras Lanuf and Es Sider ports on Sunday.

Libya’s output was 327,000 b/d on 8 July according to the NOC. That is up from May when production sank as low as 150,000 b/d, but remains down from the 1.4 million b/d it was exporting before protesters hijacked oil infrastructure in summer 2013.

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