Sanallah lifts force majeure at Sharara oil field
On 4 March, the National Oil Corporation (NOC) officially lifted force majeure on Sharara oilfield after it said the armed militia who had blockaded the field had been removed. According to the NOC, its subsidiary Akakus, which operates the field, had received assurances from the Libyan National Army’s (LNA) Petroleum Facilities Guards commander, Brigadier General al-Rifi Kennah Ahmed Ali, that all the individuals listed by the Attorney General (26 members of the Fezzan Anger Movement) for arrest have been expelled from the field and would not be allowed to re-enter. Production of around 80,000bpd is expected to resume on 5 March, with regular output of up to 300,000bpd to be reached over the coming days. Plans are also in place to repair the 20,000bpd lost production capacity destroyed by looting and vandalism during the blockade.
The manner of the lifting of force majeure is a victory for both Sanallah and the LNA. For Sanallah, he maintained his zero-tolerance, non-partisan approach to blockaders, willing to engage with either of the national actor who was genuinely able to fulfill the demands to ensure the safety of oil facility staff and neutrality of the field. For the LNA, they have now succeeded in securing and, crucially, opening the majority of Libya’s main oilfields, which will provide Haftar with additional leverage over national political, security and public domains.