(Removes reference to subsidies in para 21 of Nov 22 story
after Shawki corrected his comment)
* Estimates 80 pct of 2012 exports to be sold via contract
* Contract pricing based on monthly OSPs
* Says new rules aim to prevent cronyism, corruption
* Libyan firms will have to match international offers
By Emma Farge
ISTANBUL, Nov 22 Libya's National Oil
Corporation (NOC) will inform the winners for its 2012 crude oil
contracts within the next two weeks, a senior NOC official told
Reuters on Tuesday, as a handful of top officials meet with
around 50 hopeful clients from oil majors and top trading houses
The process will determine who wins the best access to the
OPEC member's prized light, sweet oil with daily exports worth a
nominal $141 million a day once exports return to full flows
following wartime disruptions.
Reuters reported last week that the NOC forecasts its export
levels to reach pre-war levels of about 1.3 million barrels per
day by the end of 2012, indicating that flows onto the
international market may increase more swiftly than expected.
"We are asking clients to send their requirements and we
will give the allocations for those who meet our criteria in 10
days or two weeks," said Ahmed Shawki, general manager for oil
marketing, adding that successful parties would then be invited
to Tripoli in December to sign contracts.
Libya issued tenders for 2012 oil product import
requirements earlier this month.
Shawki, who left the NOC after 12 years in 2007 shortly
after the arrival of Shokri Ghanem as chairman, said he and a
handful of senior NOC officials planned to meet with top traders
and executives from a total of 48 oil companies this week.
These include major oil companies and former Libyan
customers like Eni and ConocoPhillips as well as oil trading
houses Trafigura and Vitol and Wall
Street bank Morgan Stanley. MS.N
The exact breakdown of spot volumes versus term volumes was
not yet available but Shawki estimated that around 80 percent of
available supplies in 2012 would be sold via fixed term
contracts, based on monthly official selling prices.
"The big portion will be term. From time to time we will
have spot, maybe 20 percent," he said.
Price levels will be competitive, he added.
"We are looking to show we are as loyal to our country as
those that fought in the war by getting the upmost value for our
The NOC will closely examine the ability of the oil
companies to make regular payments, he said, as financial
institutions are growing more reluctant to lend in an atmosphere
of mounting concern about European government debt.
"We will evaluate all of our clients and only if they fit
our credit criteria. We have to screen them out if they don't.
We are very concerned about the international crisis," he said.
Before the uprising against Gaddafi in February, Europe was
the biggest buyer of Libya's oil with Italy alone taking around
NO MORE NIGHTCLUBS
The process for allocating crude contract will be an
important test of the NOC leaders' ability to do international
business without falling into the cronyism that critics say
characterised the late stages of the Gaddafi era.
Shawki said he had instituted a policy whereby NOC members
in the oil marketing department could no longer accept personal
gifts from oil companies looking to ingratiate themselves with
He said he had refused a number of gifts from traders over
the past two days of meetings, which he deduced from the
packaging to be designer pens.
"They used to bring gifts like watches and pens and invite
the NOC to expensive restaurants and nightclubs with girls. They
would try to spot a weakness. Now we don't accept anything
no gifts, no dinners," he said. Shawki said that companies
like Petrochina and Unipec whose government was slow to
recognise Libya's new rulers would be invited to submit
allocations for 2012 contracts and that meetings with them were
scheduled this week.
He added that under new rules Libyan oil firms like Tamoil,
based in the Netherlands, which were previously involved in
trading oil and oil products would now have to compete on the
same terms as international companies.
"We will treat them as any other commercial player. We said
to them you need to match our best price or do better," he said.
The NOC is gradually recouping billions of dollars from oil
trading houses that was trapped by sanctions during the
revolution, he added, but said that asset freezes was still
preventing some from being released.
(Reporting by Emma Farge)