Insight: Libya’s oil production faces political litmus test

Predicting what Libyan crude production will be in a few months’ time can be even trickier than forecasting the oil price itself. And the risks it faces could multiply as the country – which holds the largest oil and gas reserves in Africa – moves towards critical elections in December. Libya’s recent rise in production has confounded even the most pessimistic of analysts. In mid-September, Libyan oil production surged to more than five-year highs of 1.28 million b/d, according to Mustafa Sanalla, chairman of the state-owned National Oil Corporation.   Most independent observers would see that as on the high side, but estimates show production late summer reached just above the 1 million b/d mark. Libya’s oil output hit 1.05 million b/d in September, its highest level since June 2013, according to the latest S&P Global Platts OPEC production survey. Libya’s oil sector has been unfortunately synonymous with turmoil since the toppling of leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. Since then, production sank to around one-third of a total capacity of 1.6 million b/d, until the recovery began to show signs of promise in early 2016. Despite the slight progress, uncertainty over Libya’s political future and a worrying security situation continue to… continue reading

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Source: CTRM Center

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