Ambassador Norland Stresses Need for Libya’s NOC to remain Neutral


On Tuesday, the US Ambassador to Libya, Richard Norland held a meeting with the Chairman of the National Oil Corporation (NOC), Mustafa Sanalla in Tripoli.

“In a detailed conversation with NOC Chairman Sanalla, Amb. Norland discussed the situation in the energy sector and the need for the NOC to continue playing its unified, apolitical, technocratic role in Libya’s oil and gas sector, in coordination with the Ministry of Oil and Gas,” the US Embassy tweeted.

The NOC’s greatest challenge has always been that it has never been able to use any of its revenues immediately to maintain and expand its infrastructure. Instead, it has always had to go to the government for funding, which was not always forthcoming. This arrangement has on occasion meant that it did not even have sufficient funds to pay its workforce.

The NOC is Libya’s most important economic asset, providing most public revenue even during a decade of violence and chaos. Libya’s energy sector sprang back to life this year following a ceasefire deal in the war-torn country.

Libya is now producing 1.24 million barrels per day, a tenfold increase from an average of 121,000 bpd in the third quarter of 2020, before the ceasefire deal.

This still remains below the levels of the Gaddafi era, when the country was producing between 1.5 million and 1.6 million barrels per day.