Saudis offers oil hand to Libya

Feb. 5, 2013 at 6:51 AM

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- Saudi Arabia said there's room to work with the Libyan government as its oil sector recovers from war, the Saudi petroleum minister said from Riyadh.

Saudi Petroleum Minister Ali al-Naimi met with Libyan Oil and Gas Minister Abdul-Bari al-Aroussi in Riyadh. The Saudi leader expressed interest in collaborating with Tripoli as a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries.

"There are various areas for cooperation between the two countries, especially in the field of oil, both in terms of international coordination or in terms of the exchange of experiences and expertise in the petroleum industry," Naimi was quoted by the official Saudi Press Agency as saying.

The Libyan oil sector has rebounded since civil war in 2011. The country is producing around 1.6 million barrels per day, its pre-war level.

Italian energy company Eni in December presented Tripoli to a 10-year investment plan worth $8 billion.

Bloomberg editors in January, however, wrote that "real progress is impossible" unless Libya tackles institutional and security challenges.

A terrorist attack in January at an Algerian natural gas plant was said to have involved Libyan militants.

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