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Libyan conflict risks oil output 'collapse'

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Oil production "could collapse at any moment", said NOC chairman Mustafa Sanalla, even as he cited current output of over a million barrels per day.

[TRIPOLI] The head of Libya's National Oil Company warned on Monday against a "collapse in production" stemming from conflict in the North African country.

Oil production "could collapse at any moment", said NOC chairman Mustafa Sanalla, even as he cited current output of over a million barrels per day.

Strongman Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive against Tripoli - seat of the internationally recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) - on April 4.

But output could potentially fall by 95 per cent, Mr Sanalla said, in a video published on social media networks.

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Oil export terminals were not immune from the conflict, he said, recalling that the northeast of the country - nicknamed the "oil crescent" - had been at the centre at previous rounds of violence.

"The conflict could reach the oil sites" if the fighting in southern Tripoli escalates, Mr Sanalla said.

He also called on the Haftar and GNA camps to respect the NOC's neutral status and leave it outside the conflict.

The country has been mired in chaos since a Nato-backed uprising that toppled and killed longtime dictator Moamer Kadhafi in 2011.

AFP