London, UK | – War-torn Libya continues to ramp up its oil production, and resumed last week output at the major Waha oilfield, which raised its total crude output to 580,000 barrels per day, Reuters reported on Tuesday, quoting a senior Libyan oil official.
The Waha field is one of the key sources for the Sidra export grade, and the first Sidra grade to resume production. As of Tuesday, Waha was pumping 50,000 bpd, which is being directed to the Ras Lanuf port rather than Sidra due to limited storage capacity.
Back in August, before the ports were reopened, Galal Mohamed, head of operations at the company operating the Waha field, Waha Oil Co, told reporters that Waha Oil would be able to pump 75,000 bpd within six months of restarting operations at the field.
The chairman of the National Oil Corporation, Mustafa Suna’a-Allah has confirmed that from Monday, Libya’s oil production has reached 551, 000 barrels per day.
Since the national company lifted the force majeure at the four ports in the so-called Oil Crescent, Libya’s oil output has increased from between 270,000 bpd and 300,000 bpd to close to 600,000 bpd now, which brings the country closer to its target of 900,000 bpd by the end of this year.
As good as this is for Libya, its continuously rising production may be yet another issue for OPEC to tackle in the talks on how to distribute the 32.5 million bpd-33 million bpd production limit proposal among its producer members. Libya, alongside Nigeria, is kind of “exempt” from production cuts, due to the unrest and attacks on oil infrastructures that have crippled the crude output of both countries.
OPEC’s oil production reached a new record of 33.64 million bpd in September, according to the International Energy Agency.
So if the cartel decides to stick to the 32.5 million bpd-33 million bpd band, it needs to collectively cut at least 600,000 bpd to 1 million bpd. And it won’t be Libya that will take an axe to its oil production.