Libya’s oil company says economic fallout from a protracted blockade of its vital oil facilities has resulted in losses surpassing $3.5 billion at a time when the war-torn country struggles to prevent the new coronavirus.
The National Oil Corporation, which dominates Libya´s critical oil industry, reported late Monday that production had been reduced to 95,837 barrels a day as of Sunday.
Powerful tribes loyal to Libya´s eastern-based forces seized large export terminals and choked off major pipelines in January, aiming to starve the Tripoli-based government of crucial revenues.
The eastern-based forces, led by military commander Khalifa Hifter, launched an offensive in April to capture the capital, Tripoli, clashing with an array of militias loosely allied with the U.N.-supported government. The fighting for Tripoli has ground to a stalemate in recent months.
The national oil company said the over $3.5 billion losses date back to Jan. 17, with daily losses at more than $1.1 million. It warned of a looming fuel shortage, given the government´s inability to pay for imports.