Wintershall stops oil production in Libya

Wintershall stops oil production in Libya
Photo: DPA

German oil firm Wintershall said Wednesday it had stopped oil production in Libya due to the escalating violence in the country, a spokesman said.


Production at Wintershall's eight oil fields in the country has been stopped "due to security reasons," he said.

The company, which has 400 employees there who are mostly Libyans, had previously said that its daily production of 100,000 barrels per day would be reduced, but that a small group of core workers would remain on site.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), Libyan oil makes up 7.7 percent of Germany's supplies, making it the fifth biggest supplier. Oil from the country is also considered to be among the best quality.

An economy ministry spokeswoman told a regular briefing earlier Wednesday that Europe's top economy had plentiful reserves and there was "no reason for concern."

Meanwhile French energy giant Total and Spain's biggest oil company Respol both said there were suspending production in Libya.

The turmoil in Libya, Africa's fourth largest oil producer, has sent crude prices soaring with Brent North Sea crude hitting $108.57 per barrel at one stage, the highest level since September 2008.

Average prices at the pump in Germany showed the effects of the unrest on Wednesday, rising to €1.50 per litre for super-grade fuel on Wednesday.

Diesel prices rose as high as €1.40 per litre, the highest level in more than two years.

According to German automobile club ADAC, regular fuel rose by €0.028 compared to last week, and diesel by €0.05.




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