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The Times: Shell and BP to compete for Libyan oil and gas

October 02, 2006
By Martin Waller
BP AND Shell are among 47 companies that Libya has qualified to compete in its latest round of oil and gas licensing since the lifting of sanctions, the state-owned National Oil Corp (NOC) said over the weekend.
The NOC reported on its website that applications had been received from 70 companies interested in possible exploration and production-sharing agreements.

Libya wants to attract foreign investment to help it to increase its oil output capacity from about 1.6 million barrels per day (bpd) to more than 3.0 million bpd by 2010 or 2012.

The Libyan auction, the third since the lifting of US sanctions in 2004, lists 12 offshore blocks and 29 onshore areas. The results of the bidding will be announced on December 20.

Less than a third of Libya has been explored for oil. The country’s estimated reserves of 37 billion barrels put it among the top ten potential oil exporters. Heading the list of Western concerns qualifying is the Libyan offshoot of ExxonMobil. BP comes in second and Shell Exploration and Production Libya fifth.

Separately, Carlyle Group, the American private equity group, declined to comment on a report that it had prevailed in the auction to buy Tamoil, Libya’s European oil company, at a price of $3 billion (£1.6 billion).

Carlyle is believed to be among the front-runners to clinch the deal, along with Jan Kulczyk, the Polish businessman, and an investment fund from the United Arab Emirates, but it is not thought that a decision has been made by the Libyan authorities.,,5-2384317,00.html and its sister non-profit websites,,,,,, and are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia feature.

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