Libya: Rebels aim to restart oil production

Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, June 9 -- Forces opposed to the rule of Libya’s leader Moammar Gadhafi said they hope to restart oil production from the war-torn North African nation in an effort to increase revenues.

Rebel Oil and Finance Minister Ali Tarhouni, without specifying a timeline, said the opposition National Transitional Council (NTC) hoped to “soon” resume oil production of as much as 100,000 b/d.

Tarhouni’s remarks coincided with an announcement by US officials of the delivery of the TNC's first US oil sale, part of a broader strategy they hope will get money flowing to the cash-starved rebels.

San Antonio-based refiner Tesoro Corp. entered into an agreement on May 25 with TNC for 1.2 million bbl of Libyan oil, the Department of State said. The shipment was scheduled to arrive aboard the Liberian-flagged MT Equator tanker in Hawaii on June 8.

“We purchased a cargo of Libyan crude that was available at the time," Tesoro company spokesman Mike Marcy told OGJ, adding that the purchase was made in “strict accordance with the relevant White House Executive Order, signed by President Obama.”

The US government said in late February that it was legal for firms to do business with the rebel-controlled Arabian Gulf Oil Co. (Agoco), which produced 400,000 b/d prior to the outbreak of hostilities in Libya more than 4 months ago.

Sources close to the transaction told OGJ that Agoco sold the oil initially to Geneva-based oil trader Vitol SA which, in turn, sold it on to Tesoro. Neither Vitol nor Tesoro was in a position to comment on the remarks.

Tesoro’s announcement ended weeks of speculation over the purchaser of the 1 million bbl oil cargo that shipped from Libya’s rebel-held port of Marsa el-Hariga in eastern Libya aboard the MT Equator, a Suezmax tanker chartered by Vitol (OGJ Online, Apr. 11, 2011).

Meanwhile, Libya’s defecting labor minister Ali Al-Amin Manfur was quoted by Swiss media as saying Gadhafi’s regime is selling oil on the black market in an effort to raised badly needed cash.

“The regime controls the businesses, and the oil which it is selling on the black market, and it has access to the state treasury,” Manfur told the Geneva daily Le Temps, in an interview.

Manfur did not detail the oil sales in the interview, which appeared as Gadhafi’s forces began a new offensive against the rebel-held oil port of Misrata.

Under United Nations sanctions imposed on Libya in March following Gadhafi’s violent reaction to demonstrations against his rule, five companies—including National Oil Corp. and the central bank—were blacklisted.

There was no formal oil embargo, but the blacklisting of NOC effectively made it illegal to buy Libyan oil, apart from that produced by the rebel-held Agoco.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

Related Articles

Linn exits Anadarko basin in deal worth $1.95 billion

12/12/2014 Linn Energy LLC has agreed to sell all of its oil and gas properties and related midstream assets in the western Anadarko basin for $1.95 billion t...

Barton introduces bill to remove US crude export limits

12/11/2014

US Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.) introduced legislation that would remove US crude oil export limits that have been in place for nearly 40 years.

Study improves subsea pipeline preheating

12/01/2014 A higher flow rate at lower temperatures can more effectively preheat subsea crude oil pipelines than currently used techniques. This article found...

US crude exports debate prompts a fresh look at the Jones Act

12/01/2014 The Jones Act, which requires that maritime transportation of goods between domestic ports take place on US-flagged vessels, is becoming more promi...

Legislative vote delays St. Croix refinery sale

12/01/2014 The Senate of the 30th Legislature of the US Virgin Islands has voted unanimously to send back a proposed agreement that would provide for the rest...

PAA, EPP to expand Eagle Ford pipeline, build terminal

11/04/2014 Plains All American Pipeline LP (PAA) and Enterprise Products Partners LP (EPP) are constructing a condensate gathering system into their Three Riv...

Pipeline, CNG top Cyprus gas export options

11/03/2014 Pipeline and CNG are the best options for exporting natural gas production from Cyprus to relatively close markets in terms of both initial cost an...

BOEM to prepare EIS for potential Cook Inlet lease sale

11/03/2014 The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management plans to prepare an environmental impact statement for a possible oil and gas lease sale in Cook Inlet off...

White Papers

AVEVA NET Accesses and Manages the Digital Asset

Global demand for new process plants, power plants and infrastructure is increasing steadily with the ...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Approach for the Digital Asset

To meet the requirements for leaner project execution and more efficient operations while transferring...
Sponsored by

Diversification - the technology aspects

In tough times, businesses seek to diversify into adjacent markets or to apply their skills and resour...
Sponsored by

Engineering & Design for Lean Construction

Modern marketing rhetoric claims that, in order to cut out expensive costs and reduce risks during the...
Sponsored by

Object Lessons - Why control of engineering design at the object level is essential for efficient project execution

Whatever the task, there is usually only one way to do it right and many more to do it wrong. In the c...
Sponsored by

Plant Design for Lean Construction - at your fingertips

One area which can provide improvements to the adoption of Lean principles is the application of mobil...
Sponsored by

How to Keep Your Mud System Vibrator Hose from Getting Hammered to Death

To prevent the vibrating hoses on your oilfield mud circulation systems from failing, you must examine...
Sponsored by

Duty of Care

Good corporate social responsibility means implementing effective workplace health and safety measures...
Sponsored by

Available Webcasts


On Demand

Optimizing your asset management practices to mitigate the effects of a down market

Thu, Dec 11, 2014

The oil and gas market is in constant flux, and as the price of BOE (Barrel of Oil Equivalent) goes down it is increasingly important to optimize your asset management strategy to stay afloat.  Attend this webinar to learn how developing a solid asset management plan can help your company mitigate costs in any market.

register:WEBCAST


Parylene Conformal Coatings for the Oil & Gas Industry

Thu, Nov 20, 2014

In this concise 30-minute webinar, participants have an opportunity to learn more about how Parylene coatings are applied, their features, and the value they add to devices and components.

register:WEBCAST


Utilizing Predictive Analytics to Optimize Productivity in Oil & Gas Operations

Tue, Nov 18, 2014

Join IBM on Tuesday, November 18 @ 1pm CST to explore how Predictive Analytics can help your organization maximize productivity, operational performance & associated processes to drive enterprise wide productivity and profitability.

register:WEBCAST


US HYDROCARBON EXPORTS Part 3 — LNG

Fri, Nov 14, 2014

US LNG Exports, the third in a trilogy of webcasts focusing on the broad topic of US Hydrocarbon Exports.

A discussion of the problems and potential for the export of US-produced liquefied natural gas.

These and other topics will be discussed, with the latest thoughts on U.S. LNG export policy.

register:WEBCAST


Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected