The National Oil Corporation (NOC) announced Wednesday reinstatement of force majeure on crude oil loadings at Al-Zawiya port starting on Tuesday, July 30, it said in a statement.
The NOC added that this decision was prompted by a new illegal Sharara pipeline valve closure halting crude oil supply from Sharara to the port.
"This is the second illegal valve closure and breach of pipeline security by unidentified perpetrators in the last ten days." The statement reads.
"NOC has also notified commercial partners of this development. Staff from NOC’s subsidiary, Akakus Oil Operations attempted to reopen the valve but were prevented from doing so by a local armed group. Negotiations are ongoing in an effort to restart production as soon as possible." The statement adds.
The Chairman of the NOC, Mustafa Sanallah said this latest incident only serves to highlight the fragility of the security environment and total disregard for the impact of such acts on the lives of everyday Libyans.
"The loss of production at Libya’s largest oilfield severely disrupts power supply to the grid and continued funding of basic services. This is most acutely felt by communities in the South." Sanallah added.
He said the perpetrators of this incident must be brought to justice and the rule of law upheld.
"Adequate operational budget must be secured to strengthen industrial security procedures to prevent further such incidents." Sanallah remarked.
In the meantime, the statement said that Akakus has informed the General Electric Company of Libya (GECOL) of the subsequent disruption to Ubari power plant crude oil supply, adding that alternative arrangements are being prepared to ensure continued operations at the power station.
Last week, NOV said Sharara oilfield had regained its production capacity levels after force majeure had been lifted on July 23.
That incident in late July caused a loss of 290.000 bpd of crude - that is about 19 million dollars a day.