Libya’s Oil Production Recovers to Pre-blockade Level

Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja with agency report

Libya’s crude output has rebounded to its early April levels, the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) member’s oil minister said, in an increase that could help cool a jittery global oil market.

Output has climbed to 1.2 million barrels per day, Oil Minister Mohamed Oun said in a telephone interview with Bloomberg.

 The level is a milestone after production had been more than halved since mid-April. The increase comes after officials reached an agreement earlier this month with protesters and tribal leaders to reopen fields and export terminals largely shut for months.

The North African nation’s oil output has been hit by a power struggle between rival governments headed by Abdul Hamid Dbeibah in the west and Fathi Bashagha in the east. Each claim to be the legitimate prime minister, who each claim to be the legitimate prime minister.

The ramp-up in production would not only help bring in foreign currency into the country, but also could offer some relief for under-supplied oil markets and high prices that have stoked inflation across the globe.

Libya’s oil output has see-sawed over the past years, largely as a result of the political and security unrest in the country that ensued after the ouster of Moammar Al Qaddafi in 2011. Power struggles between rival governments have compounded years of neglect in developing or revamping the oil infrastructure.

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