Libyan Oil Output at Risk Amid East-West Conflict

Libyan Oil Output at Risk Amid East-West Conflict

Libyan oil output is expected to fall if a deadlock between east and west factions remains unsettled, Bloomberg reported. An official from the Tripoli-based National Oil Corporation (NOC) said that remaining storage capacity at Marsa al-Hariga port was limited and filling up fast. According to Reuters, tanks at Hariga were 7-10 days away from reaching their full capacity.

With no tankers loading crude at the port, Libya will be forced to shut in around 120,000b/d of production, or the export capacity of the port.

Days after failing to sell a cargo independently of Libya’s NOC in Tripoli, eastern officials told state-owned Arabian Gulf Oil –which controls production in the region– not to allow tankers to depart without its approval. After that, they barred the Seachance tanker from exporting 1m barrels of crude from the port of Hariga, saying it did not have relevant official documentation. The tanker, belonging to the Anglo–Swiss trading company Glencore, was originally due to load a 600,000 barrel cargo on April 26th-28th.

Libya has two competing governments, one in Tripoli and one in the east of the country. The eastern administration has set up its own National Oil Corporation in parallel to the internationally recognized Tripoli-based NOC. It has tried, yet failed so far to export crude independently. However, the Tripoli-based NOC official said that negotiations were underway to resolve a dispute between the eastern and western factions.


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