The Libyan oil company announces the closure of an important oil field



The Libyan National Oil Corporation announced on Sunday the closure of production in a major oil field in the south of the country, declaring a “force majeure”.

“On Saturday, the Al-Fil camp was subjected to arbitrary closure attempts, due to the entry of a group of individuals and the impediment of the camp workers from continuing production,” the NOC said on Facebook.

He added that the camp was closed on Sunday, marking the second closure in a few weeks, “making it impossible for the NOC to implement its contractual obligations.”

The company said it “is required to declare a state of force majeure” and will no longer be able to supply crude oil to the Mellitah complex on the country’s northwest coast.

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declaring major force it is a legal move that allows parties to free themselves from contractual obligations when factors such as fighting or natural disasters make compliance impossible.

According to the Libyan state news agency, the closure comes after a group of people said they wanted to stop production “until a government appointed by the parliament takes office in the capital”.

Libya recently found itself again with two rival governments after the east-based parliament in February appointed a new prime minister in a direct challenge to the UN-mediated government in Tripoli.

The move underscores the extent of divisions in the war-torn country as observers fear a new descent into violence.

Al-Fil, about 750 kilometers southwest of Tripoli, is jointly managed by NOC and the Italian energy giant Eni and produces around 70,000 barrels of oil per day.

The field had already been forced to temporarily close in early March, when an armed group closed the crude oil supply valves.

Oil revenues are vital to the economy of Libya, a country that sits on Africa’s largest known reserves.

The NOC is one of the few institutions to remain intact despite a decade of violence and lawlessness that has gripped the country since the NATO-backed uprising that dominated longtime leader Moamer Gaddafi.

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