Libya’s NOC rival leaders reach unification agreement

The chairman of Libya’s National Oil Corp. and his counterpart appointed by the government in Bayda agreed to unify the state company under a single management in an attempt to end a conflict about who controls Libya’s crude oil exports and oil revenues.

Mustafa Sanalla, head of NOC in Tripoli, will continue as chairman. The unified company will be based in Benghazi, said a statement on NOC’s web site.  Nagi el-Maghrabi will join NOC’s board.

“There is only one NOC, and it serves all Libyans,” said Sanalla. “This agreement will send a very strong signal to the Libyan people and to the international community that the Presidency Council is able to deliver consensus and reconciliation.”

The agreement recognized the Presidency Council as Libya’s highest executive authority and the House of Representatives as the highest legislative authority. NOC will submit periodic reports to committees established by both.

The two sides jointly agreed a unified budget for the rest of the current fiscal year, the news release said.

The agreement makes infrastructure a priority, especially in Benghazi. The parties indicated their desire that NOC’s board should meet regularly in Benghazi in the interim if security conditions permit. Libya split into separately governed regions in 2014, resulting in rival NOC administrations for the east and west.

El-Maghrabi told Bloomberg on July 3 that the agreement has yet to be approved by the two parliaments of Tubruk and Tripoli. Libya’s oil production has fallen drastically since Muammar Qaddafi was ousted from power in 2011.

Libya is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

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