As militant infighting in Libya escalates, the two rival governments fight for control over oil policy. According to Reuters, internationally recognized Prime Minister Thinni has publicly announced that they have full control of the country’s oil fields and revenue, even from their displaced headquarters in Tobruk. Officials at the state owned National Oil Co. and the central bank receives payments from oil buyers said revenues are flowing to the Tripoli-based accounts, so oil for now is in the hands of the state.
Press TV says Islamic militants have continued to launch attacks on major oil fields such as Sharara with the hope of establishing claims to further their control like in Syria, using the revenue to extend their insurgency and manifest their authority over Libya as a whole, but Thinni assures the international community that this will not happen.
From reading Controversies in Globalization we can see that oil is a huge factor in Middle Eastern diplomacy and Western countries foreign interests. Because of Libya’s instability, OPEC is concerned with future assets. We also know that in Middle Eastern economies, who ever controls the oil controls the wealth. The hands in which the revenue ends up is a vital part of the equation. If islamic groups are successful in taking over these major oil fields and plants, it could be significantly detrimental for the elected parliaments ability to maintain control. In the Global realm, OPEC members and international actors are uncertain in how to address the Libyan chaos. Preventing the Syrian situation, where ISIL has taken control of major oil fields and use it to fund their insurgency, is vital in Libya. Slipping deeper into the grave of a failed state and collapsing into anarchic warlordism is not only detrimental to Libya’s future, but also to its regional neighbors and international ties.