How Has Eni Managed To Extract Oil In Volatile Libya?

How Has Eni Managed To Extract Oil In Volatile Libya?

From Ventures Africa

Eni, the Italian energy titan, has been actively extracting oil from Libya despite the escalated unrest that has left the country in ruins. Reports suggest the oil firm has been producing very close to capacity in the war-torn nation.

It turns out Eni is the only global company that is doing so. The Italian oil giant has succeeded in keeping its assets safe by employing security provided by local militias. It is understood that Libya’s security concerns have forced competing oil giants like French powerhouse Total, Spain’s Repsol and the US’s Marathon Oil to halt production.

The risks for these firms deepened in March this year with the surge in activities of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). ISIS has been described as the most significant threat to the nation since the insecurity seen during the crackdown on former leader Moammar Gadhafi nearly five years ago. Some of the country’s oil fields were left in shambles following assaults last month by killers that are allegedly aligned to ISIS.

“Eni’s operations through its partners have largely been spared in the fighting between an Islamist group of militias called Libya Dawn that controls the capital of Tripoli, and an internationally recognized government in the city of Baida, thanks to security arrangements struck on its behalf, according to people familiar with the matter,” the Wall Street Journal reported this week.

In the nation’s northwest corner, an Eni pipeline carrying around 10 percent of Italy’s natural gas supplies is positioned near a jihadi training camp but is protected by a militia called Western Shield. The group is part of the Libya Dawn, said Libyan officials and a Western security official.

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