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Cautious optimism for Wintershall in Libya

June 19, 2012 at 6:12 AM

LONDON, June 19 (UPI) -- Oil production in Libya has reached 70 percent of the level obtained before the country's civil war began in February 2011, a Germany company said.

German energy company Wintershall, before the war, was producing around 100,000 barrels of oil per day. Wintershall Vice President Klaus Langemann told an energy conference in London that production was at 70 percent of that level, more than a year after the conflict began.

"We are at more than 70 percent of our original production capacity and we are producing a little beyond 70,000 bpd," he was quoted by the Platts news service as saying.

The interim administration that took over after the war has requested assistance with an oil export pipeline, which Langemann said would be completed by year's end.

Libya is among the world leaders in terms of oil reserves. Langemann said, however, that the political environment wasn't yet ripe for business.

"The decision-making regime is not there at the moment," he said.

Elections for a national assembly in Libya take place next month. Campaign season began Monday.

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