News / Middle East

Oil Official: Libya's Hariga Port to Resume Exports Within Days

FILE - A view of pipelines and a loading berth of the Marsa al Hariga oil port in the city of Tobruk, east of Tripoli, Libya.
FILE - A view of pipelines and a loading berth of the Marsa al Hariga oil port in the city of Tobruk, east of Tripoli, Libya.
Reuters
Libya's eastern Hariga port will resume oil exports within days after protesters agreed to end a four-month blockage, an oil official said on Friday.
 
A reopening would be a victory for Prime Minister Ali Zeidan who has been trying to end such blockades, which have reduced Libya's oil output to 250,000 bpd from 1.4 million bpd in July, cutting much needed revenue for rebuilding the state.
 
The protesters in the east, which was the cradle of the revolt that ousted veteran leader Moammer Gadhafi, also have their own victory, of sorts, as Libyan authorities are building a new oil headquarters there, moving it from the capital Tripoli in the west, to appease their calls for greater autonomy.
 
Tribesmen and other protesters have occupied Hariga, located in Tobruk in the far east of Libya, since August to press their financial and autonomy demands despite several government attempts to reopen the terminal.
 
It has an export capacity of 110,000 barrels per day and also serves the Tobruk oil refinery.
 
There was no immediate confirmation from the government which has repeatedly announced Hariga would reopen. But in a  sign of progress, state National Oil Corp (NOC) said last week the 20,000 barrels a day-Tobruk refinery had resumed work.
 
Mohamed Ben Shatwan, head of Arabian Gulf Oil Co (AGOCO) operating Hariga port, told Reuters an agreement had been reached with local people to secure the port and restart the export terminal.
 
“A ship is docked at the port, and exports will resume within days,” Shatwan said in the eastern city of Benghazi, adding that oil from the Sarir field had already been pumped to the port.
 
He spoke on the sidelines of ceremony attended by senior officials to lay the foundation stone for the new NOC headquarters in Benghazi, which will move from Tripoli.

Foundation
 
Many in the east, home to much of the country's oil wealth, sympathize with port and oil strikers campaigning for a greater share of oil sales and power in the turmoil that has bedeviled Libya two-and-a-half years after Gadhafi was ousted then killed.
 
“We meet today to lay the foundation stone ... for the National Oil Corp. and other government institutions to achieve economic and social development,” Deputy Oil Minister Omar Shakmak told the audience.
 
State-owned Libyan Airlines, the Libyan Insurance Company and the National Investment Company are also set to move to the eastern port city, which was starved of cash under Gadhafi.
 
Last week, the Tripoli government had expected a heavily-armed autonomy group in eastern Libya to lift the blockage of the Ras Lanuf, Es-Sider and Zueitina ports previously accounting for 600,000 bpd after tribal elders pressured it.
 
But autonomy leader Ibrahim Jathran declared at the last minute that talks with Tripoli to get a greater share of oil revenues for the east had failed.
 
Jathran's and other militias involved in oil strikes in the east and other parts of the country helped topple Gadhafi in 2011 but have kept their weapons, fuelling concerns about instability in the North African country.
 
The NOC ceremony came as gunmen assassinated one air force officer in another part of Benghazi while he was leaving a mosque after Friday prayers, a security source said.
 
The security situation has sharply deteriorated in Benghazi, Libya's second-largest city, in the past few months.
 
Most countries closed their consulates in the city after a series of attacks and some foreign airlines have stopped flying there. The U.S. ambassador and three other Americans were killed in September 2012 during an Islamist assault on the consulate.
 
Western diplomats worry the violence in Benghazi will spill over to the capital which has also seen some clashes between militias in recent months.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama, Modi Break Nuclear Deal Deadlock

Impasse over liability issues had been stalling bilateral civilian nuclear cooperation; deal reached at start of US president's three-day visit to India More

WHO's Late Efforts in Tackling Ebola Highlight Need for Reform

Health experts debate measures to reform agency’s response to global public health emergencies in special one-day session on deadly outbreak More

One Tumultuous Year in Power for CAR's President

As sectarian violence raged across Central African Republic, interim President Catherine Samba-Panza has Herculean task: to end civil war and put country back on right track More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youthi
X
Julie Taboh
January 23, 2015 11:08 PM
Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.
Video

Video US Marching Bands Grow Into a Show of Their Own

The 2014 Super Bowl halftime show was the most-watched in history - attracting an estimated 115 million viewers. That event featured pop star Bruno Mars. But the halftime show tradition started with marching bands, which still dominate the entertainment at U.S. high school and college American football games. But as Enming Liu reports in this story narrated by Adrianna Zhang, marching bands have grown into a show of their own.
Video

Video Secular, Religious Kurds Face Off in Southeast Turkey

Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast has been rocked by violence between religious and secular Kurds. Dorian Jones reports on the reasons behind the stand-off from the region's main city of Diyarbakir, which suffered the bloodiest fighting.
Video

Video Kenya: Misuse of Antibiotics Leading to Resistance by Immune System

In Kenya, the rise of drug resistant bacteria could reverse the gains made by medical science over diseases that were once treatable. Kenyans could be at risk of fatalities as a result if the power in antibiotics is not preserved. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story from Nairobi.
Video

Video Solar-Powered Plane Getting Ready to Circumnavigate Globe

Pilots of the solar plane that already set records flying without a drop of fuel are close to making their first attempt to fly the craft around the globe. They plan to do it in 25 flying days over a five month period. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video How Experts Decide Ethiopia Has the Best Coffee

Ethiopia’s coffee has been ranked as the best in the world by an international group of coffee connoisseurs. Not surprisingly, coffee is a top export for the country. But at home it is a source of pride. Marthe van der Wolf in Addis Ababa decided to find out what makes the bean and brew so special and how experts make their determinations.
Video

Video Yazidi Refugees at Center of Political Fight Between Turkey, Kurds

The treatment of thousands of Yazidis refugees who fled to Turkey to escape attacks by Islamic State militants has become the center of a dispute between the Turkish government and the country's pro-Kurdish movement. VOA's Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video World’s Richest 1% Forecast to Own More Than Half of Global Wealth

The combined wealth of the world's richest 1 percent will overtake that of the remaining 99 percent at some point in 2016, according to the anti-poverty charity Oxfam. Campaigners are demanding that policymakers take action to address the widening gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’, as Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid