Libya is mired in a fresh struggle over control of its crude exports after a major rift opened up this week between the Tripoli-based and UN-backed National Oil Corporation and the Libyan National Army, the de facto eastern authority. The LNA on June 25 handed control of the country’s five eastern oil export terminals — Ras Lanuf, Es Sider, Brega, Marsa el-Hariga and Zueitina — to a rival oil company, the Benghazi-based NOC East, ending a two-year pact between the LNA and NOC Tripoli. The self-declared NOC East has instructed all the ports to block crude exports not authorized by itself, throwing into doubt the control, production and export of some 790,000 b/d, or some three-quarters of the country’s total oil production capacity. The following is a list of key facts on the oil impact of Libya’s latest internal power struggle.
OPEC member Libya was producing 950,000 b/d in May before the latest clashes in eastern Libya began to disrupt output, according to S&P Global Platts estimates. The seizure of Libya’s two largest export terminals — Ras Lanuf and Es Sider — by former Petroleum Facilities Guards (PFG) militants on June 14 caused crude production to drop by more than 450,000 b/d.
The occupation was short-lived, with the LNA wresting back control days later, but a force majeure remains in place on Es Sider and Ras Lanuf crude loadings. Sources put Libya’s current crude output back up at around 700,000 b/d.
Ras Lanuf has been exporting at around 130,000 b/d, which is almost half its 220,000 b/d capacity. The larger Es Sider terminal normally ships around 260,000 b/d, around 50,000 b/d shy of full export capacity.