Bloomberg News

Libya’s PetroCanada Venture Will Pump Oil in a ‘Few Weeks’

September 25, 2011

(Updates with comments from venture’s chairman in third- fifth paragraphs.)

Sept. 25 (Bloomberg) -- Harouge Oil Operations, a joint venture between Libya’s state-owned National Oil Corp. and PetroCanada, will begin pumping crude from the country’s Amal field in a “few weeks,” the company’s chairman said.

The venture expects to reach its full output level of 100,000 barrels a day by year’s end, Abdulwahab Elnaami said in an interview today at his office in the Libyan capital Tripoli. Harouge stopped producing oil in March, after a popular revolt escalated into armed conflict against the North African country’s leader Muammar Qaddafi.

“We are preparing to start” operations, Elnaami said. “It takes some time.”

The company’s main challenge is to restore accommodations and other worker facilities, though damage to its fields and equipment has been minimal, he said. Harouge is also inspecting and preparing to restore operations at the Ras Lanuf terminal, which it operates, Elnaami said.

Pumping will begin from Amal, the company’s largest field, to be followed by production at the Ghani, Tibisti and En Naga deposits, he said. Amal in eastern Libya is Harouge’s biggest field, and it receives about one-third of Libya’s total oil output before the crude is pumped onward to Ras Lanuf, according to the company website. No oil is now passing through Amal, Elnaami said.

Libya’s crude output slumped to 60,000 barrels a day in July from 1.7 million barrels in January, according to the Paris-based International Energy Agency. The collapse in production from the holder of Africa’s largest oil reserves contributed to a 21 percent rally in oil prices in London this year, and it prompted the IEA to coordinate a global release of emergency stockpiles in June to compensate for the lost supply.

--Editors: Bruce Stanley, Andrew J. Barden

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Tuttle in Doha at rtuttle@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Bruce Stanley at bstanley5@bloomberg.net


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