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Libya’s Sharara oilfield production steadying around 300,000 bpd

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Production at Libya’s Sharara oilfield is stabilizing around 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) and the OPEC member’s National Oil Corp is trying to restore full capacity of 340,000 bpd, a Libyan oil source told Reuters on Thursday.

Repeated shutdowns at the field, Libya’s largest, have slashed capacity which was running at a maximum of 280,000 bpd in recent months.

The most recent interruption was a two-day shutdown in early October by an armed group known as Brigade 30.

The field was also shut on numerous other occasions this year including on Aug. 19 for over two weeks due to a pipeline blockade and for a few days due to strike action in June.

The oilfield faced a prolong shutdown of over two years until December last year.

Repeated and long shutdowns cause pressure in the oilfield’s wells to drop, slashing its production capacity.

Boosting capacity at the field requires much-needed investment that NOC has been struggling to secure.

In addition to being one of Libya’s main export grades, Sharara also feeds the 120,000 bpd Zawiya oil refinery in the west of the country, currently the largest operating refining facility.

The field is operated by the NOC in partnership with Repsol , Total, OMV and Statoil.