U.N. issues oil warning to Libya

Sept. 17, 2013 at 8:31 AM

UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 17 (UPI) -- Libya needs to resolve issues that are dramatically curtailing its oil export potential or risk going broke, the U.N. special envoy to the country said.

Libya before civil war in 2011 was producing approximately 1.6 million barrels of oil per day. Conflicts related to security at oil export terminals and federalist campaigns in the eastern part of the country have nearly eliminated the country from the oil market.

Tarek Mitri, U.N. special envoy to Libya, told the U.N. Security Council the country may be in dire financial straits without a resolution.

"In a country where oil revenues account for approximately 80 percent of Libya's gross national product and 97 percent of exports, the Libyan government faces the dangerous prospect of not being able to meet its financial obligations unless a resolution to this crisis is reached imminently," he said in his statement Monday.

Libyan officials told The Libya Herald work at two major oil fields resumed Monday. Abdulwhab al-Ghaid, director of a congressional crisis committee, told the newspaper negotiations were under way to resolve lingering issues curtailing oil production.

Libya was forced to declare force majeure because of the unrest. That means contractual obligations on oil were suspended because of circumstances beyond the government's control.

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