Libya moves oil headquarters to Benghazi

June 6, 2013 at 9:14 AM

TRIPOLI, Libya, June 6 (UPI) -- Libyans need to get used to moving around in response to a decision to move the headquarters of a national oil company to Benghazi, a university professor said.

Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zidan announced Libya's National Oil Corp. was among those companies relocating from Tripoli to Benghazi. Tripoli University Political Science Professor Said Laswad told The Tripoli Post the decision would better integrate the Libyan population.

"It is courageous and a positive decision on the part Zidan's government," he was quoted as saying Thursday.

Much of Libya's oil wealth is centered in the east of the country rather than near Tripoli, situated near the western border with Tunisia.

"Those who work for NOC in Tripoli [and] have never been to Benghazi 'til now will be able to move there, work and live in another Libyan city where they may stay forever," Laswad said.

Benghazi councilmen applauded the measure. They said the oil industry was centered in the eastern part of the country before Moammar Gadhafi came to power in 1969, the Post reported

Libya has struggled to maintain security in the wake of civil war in 2011. British energy company BP pulled some of its staff out of Libya in response to the security situation last month.

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