Libya declares force majeure at biggest oilfield

Libya declares force majeure at biggest oilfield
PHOTO CREDIT: Washington Post

Libya’s National Oil Company (NOC) said late on Monday it has declared force majeure on operations at El Sharara oilfield, a week after the company declared force majeure on the field’s exports.

The state-owned oil company said in a statement that production from Libya’s biggest oilfield will only restart after “alternative security arrangements are put in place”.

“Clearly we cannot return to the security situation we were in before the field was shut,” NOC Chairman, Mustafa Sanalla, was quoted as saying in the statement.

The NOC last week declared force majeure on exports from the 315,000-barrels-per-day oilfield located in the south of the North African country after the field was seized by a local militia group.

Tribesmen and security guards had seized the field demanding payments and development funds for the neglected south.

The El Feel oilfield, which is also located in the south and uses the same power supply as El Sharara, has not been affected by the declaration and is pumping around 70,000 bpd, a field engineer said.

NOC could not be reached for immediate comment.