London — Libya's Sharara field restarted production late Thursday after it was offline for more than a week due an unlawful valve closure, sources said Friday.
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A source based in the country said the valve was reopened Thursday afternoon and production resumed in the evening, with the output expected to return to normal levels gradually.
Around 300,000 b/d of production at the Sharara oil field was forced offline as the valve was closed by an unidentified group near Zawiya last Tuesday.
Production at Libya's 300,000 b/d Sharara field had been halted for the second time in a month, resulting in a force majeure on crude loadings from the Zawiya terminal.
Force majeure on Sharara loadings -- which was declared on July 30 -- is also expected to be lifted in the next few hours, according to sources.
Libya is embroiled in a protracted civil war as the Libyan National Army, forces loyal to the UN-backed government, and other militia groups have clashed regularly in the past three months.
Representatives at state-owned National Oil Corporation were unavailable for comment.
Analysts expect more short-term outages amid a deteriorating security environment.
Paul Sheldon, chief geopolitical adviser with S&P Global Platts Analytics said the recent closures "raise red flags" and "logic indicates that another major outage lies on the horizon."
Libya produced 1.05 million b/d of crude oil in July, its lowest since February, according to the recent Platts OPEC survey. Libya's oil industry has been at the mercy of groups vying for control of valuable assets, with armed attacks reported on key pipelines and production facilities since the 2011 civil war.
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