Libyan revolt prompts oil price surge
Tue, 22 Feb 2011 08:15:32 GMT
Recent violent political uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa and concerns over disruptions in the oil supply have pushed world crude prices to their highest levels in two years.
The Libyan revolution and political turmoil in other oil producing countries triggered a surge in Brent crude prices in London, boosting the value of a barrel of oil to above $107 on Tuesday.
Son of Libyan ruler Colonel Muammar Qaddafi, Seif al-Islam, has warned of an ensuing civil war in the country, adding that it may jeopardize Libya's vast oil resources.
Meanwhile, local tribes in the north African country took control of headquarters of an oil company in Ubari city in southwestern Libya on Monday.
Libya exports 1.1 million barrels of oil per day. It was the world's 12th largest oil exporter in 2009 and has proven oil reserves of 44 billion barrels, the largest in Africa, according to the International Energy Agency.
The British Petroleum (BP) has also suspended its exploration programs in the volatile country. Shell, Marathon Oil and other producers have begun relocating employees to safer areas until tensions alleviate in the country.
The Libyan regime has resorted to employing indiscriminate machine gun fire in its brutal crackdown on mass protests as the prospect of its downfall has gained further momentum by intensifying revolt against the four-decade-old rule of Qaddafi.
In response to rising prices, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is already pumping the most amount of oil since approving production cuts in December 2008.