Libya’s central bank governor said the war-torn OPEC nation needs to boost oil production to enact sweeping development plans and diversify an economy heavily reliant on energy exports.
Output needs to be at least 1.4 million barrels per day “if we want to make a shift in Libya’s economy,” Sadiq Al-Kabir told Bloomberg from the capital, Tripoli. The North African nation is currently pumping about 1.2 million, which he described as not enough to cover hikes in government spending should crude prices fall below $70 a barrel.
The bank supports the government’s efforts to boost output “in solidarity with the international community and to fill the shortage in energy supplies caused by the Russia-Ukraine war,” Kabir said.
Increasing production isn’t easy for Libya, which hosts Africa’s largest crude reserves but is mired in a political deadlock between the Tripoli-based government and a rival prime minister backed by parliament in the east. Energy fields, pipelines and ports have been at the heart of years of civil war that began with the 2011 NATO-backed overthrow of dictator Moammar Al Qaddafi, and are often blockaded by armed groups or protesters pressing political or economic demands.