The new Chairman of Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC), Farhat Bengadra vowed that “the Corporation will operate away from political strife, and this vital sector will not be politicised.”
In an interview with Al-Arabiya, Bengadra said that he is not aligned with a specific party. “We will not have a regional, tribal, political, or ideological affiliation. We are professional and we will deal with the highest levels of transparency and governance,” he said.
He denied that his Board of Directors came via a political deal. As well as reiterating that the NOC will be “very transparent and the revenues that it will obtain will be announced clearly. We will not be with any party to this conflict, and we will be a tool to improve the income of Libyans, increase production, and develop the oil sector in a manner befitting Libya.”
Bengadra expressed his optimism about the potential in the Libyan oil and gas sector. “These capabilities, if properly invested, will return a lot to the Libyan people.”
Earlier, he told Bloomberg that “operations will run smoothly, and that the NOC will receive a budget of 35 billion Libyan dinars ($7.2 billion dollars) needed to upgrade oil facilities, and the salaries of employees will be raised.” The NOC’s previous Board of Directors will be treated “with all respect and appreciation” and won’t be changed in the current period, he added.
“They will be given a chance, but they have to work efficiently and fairly without personal loyalties,” he said.
He affirmed that the NOC will also “abide by all contracts with partners and will seek to develop our relationship with them, in order to increase production.”
“The Corporation aims to boost output to 3 million barrels a day within two years — if it can get enough government funding to develop fields and export terminals, and maintain infrastructure,” he said.