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Wafa Field Reopens In Libya After Local Elders Negotiate Deal With Armed Group

The Wafa oilfield in the western side of Libya has reopened oil and gas pipelines to its nearby port after local elders negotiated an agreement with an armed group that had caused the National Oil Company to enact a force majeure.

The NOC said in an announcement on Wednesday that the force majeure has been lifted and that 450 million cubic feet of gas, 9,000 barrels per day of oil and 7,500 barrels per day of condensate would be begin production over the next few days, according to Reuters. The shutdown began on March 26th.

Wafa is a joint venture by the NOC and the Italian oil major Eni. The partnership works under the shared subsidiary Mellitah Oil Co.

Now, the NOC will redirect its energy to end the halt at the Sharara oilfield that began on Sunday. The company just resolved a week-long stoppage at the major field one week ago. The site produces 220,000 barrels per day of the nation’s 700,000 bpd output.

Another problem spot is the el-Feel oilfield in southwestern Libya, which, like the Wafa field, pumps to the Mellitah port. A branch of the Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG) has blockaded the site since December 20th – a hiatus that has left a $460-million hole in Tripoli’s revenues.

Related: Is The Oil Price Rally Running Out Of Steam?

"We are still exerting pressure to reopen it," NOC Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said on Wednesday.

In addition, forces loyal to the Government of National Accord and the Libyan National Army, which is affiliated with the House of Representatives and the rival government in the East, are fighting for control over an airbase in southwestern Libya. The Tamenhint airbase is currently under the control of the GNA forces but the LNA is advancing.

By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com

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