Libya’s El Feel Oilfield Evacuated
Some workers at Libya’s Elephant oil field have been evacuated after guards withdrew in protest over pay
Libya’s NOC (National Oil Corporation) has evacuated its workers from the Elephant oil field, also known as “El Feel” in the southwest of the country. Guards at the field had withdrawn in protest over pay and other benefits they say they have not received. That led to the evacuation of some staff by plane and negotiations over the dispute were expected to continue. The guards are from the Petroleum Facilities Guards group that held all of Libya’s oil export terminals under a blockade for more than a year until September 2016.
The evacuation comes after the emergency between NOC and representatives of the Tubu tribe who demanded more frequent fuel supplies to their region, threatening El Feel with a shutdown as well.
When the fields are shut down Libya’s oil production decrease. Even if last year the country managed to pass the 1-million-bpd threshold is still far from the pre-war 1.6 million bpd.
The Elephant field, is operated by Mellitah Oil and Gas, a joint venture of NOC and Italy’s Eni sit in Libya’s Southwestern Murzuq basin.
Shutting down oil fields has become a popular way of making a point among various groups holding grudges against the government or the oil companies operating in the country. The other oil field in Libya: Sharara was the target of three shutdowns in the past year.
Sharara and El Feel both send oil to the Zawiya refinery, which has a capacity of 120,000 bpd, which also includes an export terminal in the Oil Crescent.
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