The Indianpost

Libya: oil price rises as fightback unsettles market

A fightback by troops loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has dashed hopes of an early end to the conflict after rebels swept into the capital to be joined by many residents.

Brent for one-month forward delivery rose $109.25 early on Monday before slipping back slightly. It closed up $1.34 at $109.70.

“It could take months before oil can start to flow again from Libya,” said John Vautrain, a director at energy consulting firm Purvin & Gertz.

“I think there was a lot of euphoria on Monday. But the whole country is not completely pacified yet and we don’t have an organised government. A lot is lacking.”

Libya would be able to restart some oil output in a few months, said Shokri Ghamen, the country’s former top oil official on Monday, but it would take as long as 18 months to reach the pre-war level.

Before the civil war Libya was supplied for 2pc of the world’s oil, pumping around 1.6m barrels a day. Most oil from the country went to European refiners.

Oil prices rose above $100 a barrel during the Arab Spring, hitting a high of $127 in April after Libyan exports were halted by the unrest.

In recent days, the prices of oil has fallen on fears of a double dip recession in the US and Europe.

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