(Adds details, quote)
TRIPOLI Oct 13 Libya is currently producing
between 600,000 to 700,000 barrels per day of oil, Prime
Minister Ali Zeidan said on Sunday, as it tries to end protests
that have shut down oilfields and ports.
A mix of striking workers, militias and political activists
knocked the OPEC member's oil production to as low as 200,000
bpd last month, from 1.6 million bpd before leader Muammar
Gaddafi was ousted in 2011.
Libya took its first steps towards resuming output in the
west in mid-September after reaching a deal with some
protesters, and its oil minister said on Oct. 2 full output
could be restored within days.
In the first production update since then, Zeidan told
reporters: "Oil production is now between 600,000, 650,000 and
He said the government and parliament were working on
solving the conflict "soon".
"Libya is going through a difficult phase," he said.
Talks to reopen the major oil export terminals of Es Sider
and Ras Lanuf in the east have taken time because while some
protesters are demanding better benefits, more local investment
and more jobs, others have linked their demands to political
wrangling over the future shape of Libya.
Protesters in the east want a federal Libya with greater
powers and the headquarters of the National Oil Company (NOC)
transferred to Benghazi, the capital of the east and birthplace
of the revolution that removed Gaddafi from power.
Parliament is due to write a new constitution for the new
Libya but different groups are pushing their own agendas.
(Reporting by Ulf Laessing; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)