Farhat Bengdara, the chairman of the Libyan National Oil Corporation (NOC), announced that he had reached an agreement with British Petroleum (BP) and the Italian oil company Eni to begin drilling and producing natural gas in the Mediterranean, a field that is comparable to Egypt’s Dahr field but has larger reserves.

Eni will invest $8 billion to develop the natural gas field in west Libya, according to Bengdara, who spoke to Sky News Arabia on the sidelines of the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition. He added that the field reserves will be disclosed after production operations begin, which will happen soon and have a set date. He reaffirmed that there are more than 80 trillion square feet of verified gas reserves in Libya.

By the end of this year, Bengdara predicted that Libya’s oil income would be between 35 and 37 billion dollars, the largest amount since 2013. He also emphasised that the nation needs 4 billion dollars in annual investments to maintain its level of oil output.

In addition to developing the infrastructure of the fields, he reiterated that the NOC is working on a plan to increase production to 2 million barrels over three to five years. He added that this is an opportunity to maintain and modernise the infrastructure, including any gas or oil pipelines or tanks.