Tripoli, 2 May:
Libya’s largest oil company, AGOCO, frustrated at official failure to clear demonstrators blockading its Benghazi HQ, says it will . . .[restrict]stop production at midnight tomorrow, if the protestors have not been moved.
Should AGOCO (the Arabian Gulf Oil Company) carry out its threat, the country will lose between 350,000 to 370,000 b/d of crude production.
The company’s main office complex in Al-Qish has now been unusable for ten days. Up to 50 protestors, some of them armed, have sealed off the main entrance with a tent and have refused to let employees in to work. Some staff members however, have been permitted to go in and out of the buildings to collect personal belongings.
The complex houses AGOCO’s main administrative and logistical hubs. Though personnel have been able to work from two annexes the firm has elsewhere in Benghazi, they have not had access to key systems and equipment.
Company spokesman Abdeljalil Mayuf confirmed this afternoon that despite repeated requests to the government to remove the demonstrators, nothing had been done.
Negotiations with the blockaders had got nowhere, he said. They have a range of demands including greater transparency over government spending and job allocation, the firing of top Qaddafi-era officials still in post and the creation of work for young unemployed.
Said Mayuf:“As at 3pm today [Wednesday] nothing had been done, nothing has changed. There has been no intervention.
“We told the government and the security forces that if nothing happens then we will be obliged to stop production. We’re just waiting to see if there is any reaction.” [/restrict]