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Libya plans to raise its oil production to 1.45 million barrels per day (bpd) by the end of this year, from 1.3 million bpd now, Mustafa Sanalla, the chairman of Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC), told Bloomberg Television in an interview on Tuesday.
Libya will be able to increase its current production by another 150,000 bpd by year’s end, provided that the state oil firm regularly receives its budget and security at oil facilities is not compromised again, according to Sanalla.
The targets for the next few years are for Libya to increase production to 1.6 million bpd in two years and to 2.1 million bpd in four years, NOC’s chairman told Bloomberg.
Libya surprised many oil market observers, and probably the OPEC+ group itself, after managing in just a few months to restore its oil production back to 1.25 million bpd from less than 100,000 in September 2020. The 1.25 million bpd level was the volume which Libya, exempted from the OPEC+ cuts, was pumping before the eighth-month-long oil port blockade began in January 2020.
Although Libya has managed to keep output above 1 million bpd for a few months in a row now, NOC’s Sanalla told Bloomberg that it is still too early to discuss with OPEC the lifting of the exemption the country has been granted in the OPEC+ deals so far.
Even after the lifting of the blockade in mid-September and the ceasefire from October, Libya’s oil production has not been entirely stable so far this year due to strikes from the Petroleum Facilities Guard over unpaid salaries and the lack of funds for restoration and maintenance of oil infrastructure.
Oil loadings at export terminals were disrupted last month, after members of the Petroleum Facilities Guard stopped vessels from loading crude amid the strike over delayed salary payments, while a leak that forced the shutdown of an oil pipeline reduced oil production by as much as 200,000 bpd for a week in January.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.