Libya’s oil production has declined from 1.3 million barrels to 1 million per day due to rising debts, the head of the country’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) said on Thursday.
Production may fall further as oil companies are unable to work under mounting debts, according to NOC chief Mustafa Sanallah.
The reason for the burgeoning debt is the reduction in budget allocation for public oil companies in Libya, the official said.
“We have the capacity to raise the daily production of oil to more than 2 million barrels in the coming period, but not allocating budgets has prevented us from reaching that level,” Sanallah said.
He urged Libya’s Oil Ministry to help resolve the budget issue, warning that production could go further down.
Libya, a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), had an average daily production of 1.28 million barrels in March, according to OPEC figures.
By Mohammad Khbeisa in Tripoli, Libya
Additional reporting by Ahmed Asmar