Monday, February 28, 2011

Hope for Libyan Oil Production?

This is interesting:
In Benghazi, rebels have said that Libyan soldiers had joined the rebels in securing vital oil industry facilities around that part of the country. Some oil industry workers fleeing across the Tunisian border in recent days said they had seen Libyan soldiers fire their weapons to drive off foreign mercenaries or other security forces who had approached oil facilities not far from here.

Hassan Bulifa, who sits on the management committee of the Arabian Gulf Oil Company, the country’s largest oil producer, said Sunday that the rebels control at least 80 percent of the country’s oil assets, and that his company, based in Benghazi, was cooperating with them. The company resumed oil shipments on Sunday, loading two tankers at a port in Tobruk, Mr. Bulifa said. The ships — one bound for Austria and the other for China — represented the company’s first shipments since Feb. 10.

Although the revenue from those sales goes the company’s umbrella organization, Libya’s National Oil Company, Mr. Bulifa said Arabian Gulf Oil had ceased any coordination with the national company, though it was honoring oil contracts. And he insisted the proceeds would ultimately flow to the rebels, not Colonel Qaddafi. “Qaddafi and his gangsters will not have a hand on them,” he said. “We are not worried about the revenues.”
Too soon to know how much emphasis to place on this, but certainly worth watching. If the rebels can keep society organized well enough for the oil to keep flowing, the externalities to the rest of the world will be a lot less severe.  Money to fund the rebellion, too. Qaddafi has certainly made himself a pariah at this point, and it's devoutly to be hoped that the rebels succeed both in displacing him, and in creating a better society afterwards.


Alexander Ac said...


Stuart, by better society you mean society consuming oil left in the ground faster? :-)

Stuart Staniford said...

No, a more free and democratic one.

Alexander Ac said...

Ok Stuart, I was not very serious ;-)

but I would be quite interested in the correlation between measure of freedom and per capita oil consumption ;-) maybe gapminder?


Emil said...

Hmm, I am a bit skeptical on relying on the MSM, especially the NYT(one of the most cornucopian rags in the U.S, even allowing people like Lynch a free ride) as the basis on which to analyse the situation.

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

Not sure how oil proceeds can go to the rebels. Crude lifting contracts are signed with the national oil company and on yearly basis. How can you sign a contract with one and pay someone else? It will be a long bumpy road before it stabilizes...