Washington welcomes lift of force majeure on Libya oil exports

The US welcomed on Friday the announcement of the National Oil Corporation (NOC) on the lift of the force majeure on oil exports.

“We welcome the announcement by the National Oil Corporation to lift the force majeure and resume its vital work,” announced the US embassy in Libya on its Facebook page.

The statement confirmed that the US embassy: “Will continue to support financial transparency in Libya and enhance mutual understanding between Libyans on the equitable distribution of oil and gas revenues, through the dialogue led by the United Nations (UN).”

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Earlier on Friday, the NOC announced the lift of the force majeure on its exports, despite continuing technical problems in the reduction of production rates.

According to the NOC statement: “The tanker (Crete Bastion) will be the first vessel to be loaded from the Es-Sidra oil port.”

The Libyan oil and Haftar - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

The Libyan oil and Haftar – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

On 17 January 2020, forces loyal to Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar closed the Zueitina Oil Terminal under the pretext that oil revenues are taken over by the internationally-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA).

The militia affiliated with Haftar also shut down other oil ports and fields, which prompted the NOC to declare a force majeure state there.

According to the NOC’s latest estimates, the decline in oil production has cost Libya about $6.5 billion.

Data from the International Petroleum Corporation (IPC) and the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) revealed that Libya used to produce 1.22 million barrels per day before closing oil fields and ports, compared with the production of less than 90,000 barrels currently.