Oil prices slipped on Monday after Libya announced the resumption of oil exports after an eight-month pause, boosting supply concerns amid low demand due to the coronavirus pandemic.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $42.78 per barrel at 0625 GMT for a 0.86% drop after closing Friday at $43.15 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was at $40.94 a barrel at the same time for a 0.92% decrease after ending the previous session at $41.32 per barrel.
After Libya's announcement that it would restart oil exports, oil prices declined, raising oversupply concerns at a time when the coronavirus outbreak is dramatically decreasing global oil demand.
Libya's National Oil Corp (NOC) lifted a force majeure on the country’s oil ports and facilities on Saturday, after eastern Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar lifted the eight-month oil export blockade on Friday.
The number of coronavirus cases now exceeds 31 million worldwide and some countries are starting to consider either partial or national quarantine measures to counter a second Covid-19 wave, prompting negative oil demand expectations and price constraints.
However, having just recovered from tropical storm Laura and Sally, which forced several offshore platforms and oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico to stop production, new storm-related shutdowns in the Gulf exerted upward oil price pressure.
By Sibel Morrow