Libya’s closed Sharara oilfield is expected to lose 8,500 barrels per day to looting, state oil company National Oil Corporation (NOC) said on Thursday.
Three security breaches and looting have taken place at the 315,000 bpd field over two weeks, NOC said, reiterating its calls for the implementation of emergency security measures to allow Sharara to be reopened.
NOC declared force majeure on Dec. 17 at Sharara, its biggest oilfield, after it was taken over on Dec. 8 by tribesmen, armed protesters and state guards demanding salary payments and development funds.
NOC chairman Mustafa Sanallah warned on Thursday that attacks on the field could destroy the Sharara system and damage the economy.
“The legitimate and rightful concerns of the Southern Libyan communities are being hijacked and abused by armed gangs, who instead of protecting the field to generate wealth for all Libyans, are actually enabling its exploitation and looting,” Sanallah said.