Libya: Oil Production ‘Almost Impossible’ As IS Steps Up Activity

In the week that Libya marked the fourth anniversary of the uprising against Colonel Mu’ammar al-Qadhafi, tensions reached new heights. On 16 February, Egypt launched airstrikes against the town of Derna in response to the murder of at least 12 Egyptians by the militant Islamic State group. The next day, Libya Dawn, an armed group loyal to the unofficial government in Tripoli, made its first aerial sorties, bombing an airstrip in Zintan in the northwest of the country.

Oil production also took another dive, as an attack on a pipeline to the Hariga oil terminal forced the closure of two oilfields. Output is now estimated to be less than 200,000 b/d, with exports all but halted. An attack on another oilfield prompted the National Oil Corporation (NOC) to warn that if oilfield security cannot be reinforced, it will be forced to shut down all production.


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