Expat Exodus Slows Libya's Oil Recovery

By John Lee.

Oil industry analysts are predicting that Libya’s ability to pump more oil will be limited by the availability of foreign staff, who are reluctant to work in Libya due to the security situation.

While production has more than doubled to over 800,000 bpd in the past year, Richard Mallinson of Energy Aspects told Bloomberg that without bringing in foreign expertise to carry out deeper maintenance, "there’s only so much local teams are able to do." He predicts Libya will struggle to exceed 900,000 bpd in the coming months.

Meanwhile, Neil Beveridge at Bernstein Ltd. says that with decaying infrastructure and a fragile peace, there are clear downside risks to Libyan production.

Analyst Martijn Murphy at Wood Mackenzie said it would be a “considerable achievement” to push output above 1 million bpd on a sustainable basis, adding that the security and political situation "still hangs on a knife edge.

(Source: Bloomberg)

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