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Nigeria, Libya, others’ production struggles push oil price closer to $80

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On Wednesday, the value of oil prices went up by 30 cents or 0.24 per cent to trade at $79.47 per barrel, while the United States West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude rose by 37 cents or 0.28 per cent to sell at $76.84 per barrel.

The prices were lifted as a result of high aggregated production disruptions in Nigeria, Ecuador, and Libya amid the rapid spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant.

The three oil producers declared force majeures this month on part of their oil production because of maintenance issues and oilfield shutdowns, causing supply shortages at the global market.

Nigeria has been experiencing shut-ins due to pipeline vandalism, community interferences, sabotage of oil facilities, among others and this has limited Africa’s largest oil producer’s capabilities to increase its production in recent months.

Read also: Oil price hits US$81, as Nigeria struggles to produce enough to sell

Ecuador’s government declared force majeure over its oil exports and production contracts on Monday because of the pipeline closures, caused by ongoing erosion in Napo province.

The country’s crude production averaged 485,000 barrels per day before the force majeure and by Tuesday it had fallen close to 220,000 barrels per day, according to government data.

Also in Libya, production from El Sharara, Libya’s largest field with a capacity of 300,000 barrels per day, as well as the El Feel, Wafa and Hamada fields, had been shut down by the Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG), a paramilitary force whose brief is to protect NOC’s assets and facilities due to political dispute.

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