LIBYA'S OIL PRODUCTION: 300 TBD
According to WSJ, fighting resumed over the weekend for control of Libya's key Eastern crude-oil ports, Libyan officials said, delaying a shipment of petroleum and highlighting the fragile nature of the country's planned ramp up of exports.
The Petroleum Facilities Guards, a militia that until this month had controlled Libya's oil ports for years after the 2011 ouster and death of dictator Moammar Gadhafi, briefly retook two oil ports, Sidra and Ras Lanuf, in the country's central coast on Saturday night, militia members said.
The guards were forced out again on Sunday by the Libyan National Army, a militia that had pledged to reopen the ports for exports.
Oil traders have closely watched the situation in Libya, where production now stands at about 300,000 barrels a day—a level that Libyan officials say they could quickly ramp up again if oil ports remained open and secure for an extended period.
U.S. oil prices fell to a one-month low on Friday of $43.03 on worries about a flood of oil supplies from Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries members like Libya. The prices are down more than half from levels of over $100 a barrel last seen in mid- 2014.
The fighting has delayed the loading of a tanker that was to be the first oil shipped from Ras Lanuf since late 2014, Libyan oil officials said.
Muftah Mgerief, a Libyan National Army commander, said that his forces had fought back and that the multiple air raids were carried out to take back Ras Lanuf and Sidra from the Petroleum Facilities Guards.
Since Gadhafi's ouster, militia have divided Libya between the east and west and sought to exploit its oil riches. A unity government in Tripoli and the country's National Oil Co. are now working with the Libyan National Army to secure the ports and restart oil exports.
At its peak, Libya produced 1.6 million barrels a day, over five times as much oil as now.
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