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NOC condemns shutdown of El Sharara oilfield

The Address | Benghazi – Libya

TRIPOLI – The Tripoli-based National Oil Corporation (NOC) condemned in a statement on Saturday the shutdown of El Sharara oilfield by a local unit of the Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG) which NOC described as an “occupation”.

Tribesmen and the local unit of the Petroleum Facilities Guards (PFG) had in Saturday afternoon announced a shutdown of El Sharara oil field, located in Murzuq Desert southwest of Libya, to press for demands of more development.

“We as the force securing the field inform you that the Fezzan Anger Movement entered the field and stopped the production in line with the demands of the movement,” the local PFG unit said in a statement.

A group of tribesmen calling themselves the Fezzan Anger Movement living in the impoverished areas hosting the El Sharara filed had first appeared in October at the facility threatening to close it unless demands were met.

NOC warned in its statement that “a forced shutdown could have long-term logistical consequences that would delay the reopening of the oil field.”

“A shutdown of the Sharara field would result in a production loss of 315,000 barrels a day, with a knock-on effect of 73,000 barrels at El Feel due to its dependence on Sharara electricity supply. Supply to the Zawiya refinery would also be affected. This would equate to a combined daily cost to the Libyan economy of 32.5 million USD. The oilfield at present remains open.” NOC said

NOC demanded the PFG leadership to take “swift action” against the local unit, listing their names in the statement and accusing them of “exploiting the suffering of southern Libyans for personal reward.”

Guards have previously forced production stoppages at El Sharara and other oil fields, complaining about salary delays or demanding other financial benefits.

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