Germany's energy giant Wintershall has restarted oil production in the Libyan Desert in concessions 96 and 97 which it operates together with Russia's Gazprom, Wintershall said in a statement on Tuesday.
The company had suspended and sealed off production operations in the eight onshore oil fields around 1,000 kilometers south-east of Tripoli in February for security reasons after the start of unrest in the African state. Before the suspension, Wintershall had produced around 100,000 barrels of oil a day in Libya since 1958.
The facilities are undamaged and production has now been started up again as agreed with the Libyan National Oil Corporation (NOC), the statement said.
"We reached a production level of about 20,000 barrels per day shortly after beginning operations. Now we have to technically stabilize the production," the statement quoted Wintershall Chairman Dr. Rainer Seele as saying.
As well as the production operations on the Libyan mainland, in which Gazprom holds a 49 percent stake, crude oil production was resumed a few weeks ago on the Al Jurf offshore platform in the Mediterranean. Wintershall holds a 6.75 percent share in Block C 137 together with the national oil company Mabruk Oil with 73 percent and France's Total with a 20.25 percent stake.