Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) said its subsidiary the Arabian Golf Oil Company (AGOCO) has resumed production of 3000 oil barrels per day (bpd) at an abandoned well in the eastern Messla field.
A statement released by the NOC reveals that production resumed at the well using the latest drilling techniques developed by US oilfield services company Schlumberger, after 16 years of inactivity. Libya was producing about 1.6 million bpd before a 2011 NATO-backed uprising that removed Muammar Gaddafi. Messla’s output was around 700,000 bpd.
The removal of Gaddafi led to armed conflict and political fragmentation. Libya has been divided between rival governments and military factions based in the east and west of the country, causing political deadlock and an economic crisis.
The NOC, which relies on oil exports for most of its income, has continued to function relatively normally across the country. Output has reduced as a result of attacks on oil facilities and blockades, but partially recovered to one million barrels per day last year.
The country’s national oil company suffered a shooting attack in September on its Tripoli headquarters claimed by Islamic State Militants that killed two people and wounded 25. The NOC however noted that it has continued to manage its operations as normal.
The Tripoli-based central bank and the NOC are the state enterprises still functioning well despite the conflict.