ROSNEFT signs oil and gas deal with Libya

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February 27, 2016 – Fort Russ News –

Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten, translated by Tom Winter –

Libya has signed an agreement with the Russian energy giant Rosneft, according to which the Russians are to promote oil production in Libya. The British are raging and attacking the Russians. 

The state-owned Libyan oil giant National Oil Production (NOC) has signed an agreement with the Russian oil company in the form of a cooperation agreement. In a communication, NOC reports that it is working to attract more foreign investment. “We need the support and investment of major international oil companies to achieve our production targets and stabilize our economy,” Bloomberg cites NOC CEO Mustafa Sanalla. The Russian news agency Tass confirms the signing of the agreement, but it does not have a very strong legal binding effect.

According to the AFP, the two conglomerates intend to set up a working group to explore possibilities for cooperation in the areas of oil promotion and production. Already last month, NOC chief Sanalla had announced plans to increase oil production by 2022 to 2.1 million barrels a day with foreign investments.

The investment of large international oil companies is necessary “to reach our production targets and stabilize our economy,” Sanalla said. The North African crisis country Libya is currently controlled in large parts by armed militia. Currently, the country produces 600,000 barrels of oil a day, but before the fall of President Muammar al-Gaddafi by a Western military alliance in 2011, it was 1.6 million.

“This agreement combines potentially good profitability for Rosneft and a good policy for the Kremlin. You can now expect more deals with Rosneft in the Middle East, North Africa and developing countries, “says Chris Weafer of Macro Advisory in Moscow, according to City A.M.

The NOC wants to expand oil production in Libya to 2,1 million barrels per day by 2022. Recently, the production level had increased to 700,000 barrels, well below the 1.6 million barrels it produced before 2011. “This agreement with the largest oil company in Russia sets a common basis for us to identify areas of cooperation. The important cooperation between NOC, Rosneft and Russia can play an important and constructive role in Libya,” says Sanalla.

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The NOC also stated in the communication that Rosneft had signed an agreement to withdraw oil. Details of the contract were not mentioned.

Libya is divided between various rival groups based in Tripoli and the military commander Khalifa Haftar, who controls the east of the country. Haftar and the NOC, controlled by the unitary government in Tripoli, had sought an approach in the past months. The commander wants to sell the oil in the east of the country via the NOC. He is actively supported by Russia.

In the country, a proxy war rages around oil and natural gas. Foreign corporations are rivals for the subsidy rights and pipelines in Libya. The following energy companies are currently competing in Libya: ENI (Italy), Total SA (France), Repsol YPF (Spain), Waha Oil Co. (A US joint venture), BP (UK), ExxonMobil (USA), Statoil , Royal Dutch / Shell (the Netherlands (Great Britain), Gazprom and Rosneft (Russia), RWE (Germany).

The British were the first to go to confrontation with Moscow: At the Munich Security Conference, British Defense Minister Michael Fallon warned that Russia should not interfere in Libya: “Putin is testing the West, he is testing the alliance. We do not need a bear to put its paws in.”

But the Russians immediately countered: “Western zoos have no animals that are able to explain Russia what to do,” said Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Tuesday.

With this he countered the one who had warned Moscow to keep his “paws” out of Libya. Schoigu according to TASS: “The British have the lion as animal symbol. But an old proverb says: “All lions are cats, but not all cats are lions,” Shoigu told students of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations at the opening of a youth forum.

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