“We have reached an agreement with the company Eni for the development of the oil and gas sector, targeting two offshore fields capable of producing 850 million cubic meters of gas” per day, Bengdara said in a TV interview with local channel al-Masar.
Asked by AFP, Eni declined to comment. This agreement “between the NOC and ENI, will be signed on Saturday January 28, during an official ceremony, for the investment of 8 billion dollars for the development of these two fields”, he specified.
A visit by Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni is scheduled in the coming days in Tripoli, according to Libyan and Italian media. Nearly eleven years after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi, Libya, which has the most abundant oil reserves in Africa, remains torn between rival factions from the east and the west, against the backdrop of foreign interference.
Since March, two governments have been vying for power, one based in Tripoli (west) and recognized by the UN, the other supported by Parliament and the camp of Marshal Khalifa Haftar, the strongman of the East.
Over the past decade, Libya has been regularly plagued by violent clashes between rival factions from the East and the West, which has affected the exploitation of deposits, the transport of hydrocarbons and the oil terminals, taken into tension between the two camps.
In December, the NOC called on foreign companies active in the hydrocarbons sector to resume their exploration and production operations. The NOC then explained that it had carried out a “Evaluation” of the security situation and noted a “dramatic improvement” on some sites where it was difficult to operate before.
This vital sector for the Libyan economy needs foreign investment to reach the expected production levels, Libya wishing to increase its oil production to 2 million barrels per day, almost doubling compared to the current level of 1.2 million bpd.