Libyan Oil Woes Deepen

The Oil Crescent has apparently passed into the hands of the eastern government, which is interesting, given that two years ago the LNA was happy to give the terminals to the official NOC. Naturally, now nobody knows if Libya will be exporting any oil at all and how it will go about doing this.

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The handover of the ports to the eastern NOC is a major shift in policy from the LNA led by Khalifa Haftar and backing the parallel government in Tobruk. Haftar has supported the internationally recognized NOC based in Tripoli for the last two years. An accord between the LNA and the official Tripoli NOC has been a key factor helping to stabilize libyan oil production at around 1 million b/d.

The eastern NOC based in Benghazi is now in control of the Ras Lanuf ans Es Sider ports  along with the Marsa El Brega and Zueitina terminals. These ports serve the Sirte basin, a collection of oil and gas fields in central and eastern Libya that account for around 650,000 b/d, roughly two-thirds of the country’s total production. Now tankers without permission from the Benghazi NOC would not be allowed to dock at the eastern ports under its control .

The Tripoli NOC warned it would sue any company that tried to buy oil from the eastern authorities and that no purchase contract signed with them would be honoured.

The Benghazi-based authorities already attempted to bypass the Tripoli government in April 2016 but their planned sale of 300 000 barrels of crude was stopped by the UN Security Council. UN Security Council Resolution 2362 (2017) condemns attempts to illicitly export petroleum, including crude oil and refined petroleum products, from Libya by parallel institutions which are not acting under the authority of the GNA

Yesterday, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States have issued a joint statement demanding keeping the Libyan vital oil resources, facilities and terminals under the exclusive control of the legitimate National Oil Corporation and the sole oversight of the “Government of National Accord (GNA.)” : We are deeply concerned about the announcement that the Ras Lanuf and Sidra oil fields and facilities will be transferred to the control of an entity other than the legitimate National Oil Corporation. Libya’s oil facilities, production, and revenues belong to the Libyan people.

Today MarineTaffic shows only two tankers in the region, both are close to the Zueitina terminal

https://www.marinetraffic.com/en/ais/home/centerx:19.5/centery:30.7/zoom:9

An oil official In Zueitina said on tuesday the situation was normal, with two tankers at the terminal, the first loading 600,000 barrels of oil and the second due to load a million barrels. Both sales were made previously under the authority of the Tripoli NOC, and it is still unclear if the LNA or Benghazi NOC would attempt to cancel them.

 

 

 

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Update from the Zueitina oil terminal :

One tanker, the FELICITY, finished loading 1 million barrels at Zueitina and left the terminal on Thursday under contract from NOC Tripoli.

But two other tankers are in stand by. The MARAN HELEN is sitting full just off the coast and the AMORE MIO II is waiting in the port area without permission to berth.

 

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