Libya’s Largest Oil Field Shut Down Only Days After Restarting

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The National Oil Corporation (NOC) stated on Tuesday that the Sharara oil field – Libya’s largest – had been shut down again, only days after restarting operations.

The field had previously been forced to stop production for almost five months, due to a blockade of oil fields and ports by supporters of the Libyan National Army (LNA). The oil field was able to restart operations due to the retreat of LNA forces from western Libya. Sources said the latest shutdown was once again caused by LNA forces.

The current conflict in Libya is due to LNA attempts to capture Tripoli, from forces aligned with the Government of National Accord. The fighting has been ongoing since April, 2019.

On Sunday, an official claimed that the oil field had resumed production on 6 May. He added that the restarting of the Sharara field followed the reopening of a pipeline running to the port of Zawiya, where Libya’s largest oil refinery is located.

The Sharara field produced as much as 300,000 barrels per day prior to the blockade in mid-January.