Libya has begun exporting oil again from the eastern terminal of Zueitina after production restarted at a nearby oil field, Libyan oil officials said, in a rare sign of progress in that country’s embattled industry, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Oil flows from the country with Africa’s largest oil reserves have plunged for five months for a host of reasons including a conflict between two rival governments, strikes, protests and attacks by the terrorist network Islamic State.
Zueitina began loading 600,000 barrels of crude on the Sea Faith tanker, the port’s workers union president, Ramadan Lefkaih, said by phone to Bloomberg. The shipment, bound for Italy, is the first since May, when protesters seeking jobs at state-run National Oil Corp. shut the pipeline that supplies Zueitina with crude. The protesters agreed to reopen the export route after being promised jobs, Lefkaih said.
Zueitina receives crude from fields including the NOC-operated Nafoora, Wintershall AG’s concession C96, also known as As-Sarah, and Amal, operated by Harouge Oil Operations. It has 2m barrels in storage and its current supply rate from the fields stands at 30,000 b/d, said Lefkaih. It has an installed export capacity of 70,000 b/d, according to the oil ministry.