Libya Oil Firm closes Major Oil Field, declares ‘Force Majeure’

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Libya’s National Oil Corporation announced the closure of production at a major oil field in the country’s south on Sunday, declaring a “force majeure”.

“On Saturday… the Al-Fil field was subjected to arbitrary closure attempts, due to the entry of a group of individuals and the prevention of the field’s workers from continuing production,” the NOC said on Facebook.

It added that the field was shut down on Sunday, marking the second closure in a matter of weeks, “making it impossible for the NOC to implement its contractual obligations”.

The firm said it “is obliged to declare a state of force majeure” and would no longer be able to provide crude to the Mellitah complex on the country’s northwestern coast.

Declaring force majeure is a legal move allowing parties to free themselves from contractual obligations when factors such as fighting or natural disasters make meeting them impossible.

According to Libya’s state news agency, the closure comes after a group of individuals declared that they were halting production “until a government appointed by parliament takes office in the capital”.