Libyan crude production is running at around 1.5mn b/d and should hit 1.7mn b/d by the end of 2013. Half of this new capacity is due to be installed “maybe before” the end of the first quarter, the country’s new Oil Minister ‘Abd al-Bari al-‘Arusi told reporters on the sidelines of the 12 December OPEC Vienna meeting.

Further out Tripoli is looking at major new developments at the North Gialo and NC-98 fields (MEES, 9 November), but the priority is attracting “all the commercial service companies back to Libya,” Mr ‘Arusi said. A lack of drilling firms and service companies has meant that only Italy’s Eni and Algeria’s Sonatrach of foreign investors in Libya’s oil sector have resumed drilling, although Poland state-owned POGC is mobilizing to drill (MEES, 7 December). Turkish state firm TPAO is also planning a return to exploration having lifted force majeure on 12 December, one of the last firms to do so. (CONTINUED - 321 WORDS)