Libya: Tankers calling at Libyan ports - update

Port news

Published: 9 January 2014 Updated:

Update 10 March 2014

Members may be aware of recent media reports in respect of Libyan Government warnings over loading at ports held by armed groups not under the authority of the official Government.

The Association would like to repeat its caution to Members to proceed with caution when considering calling at ports in Eastern Libya as some of these ports may not be under the full control and authority of the official Government.

Members should seek detailed updates from Shipping Agents, and as may be necessary from the Club's Correspondents, before proceeding.

As the situation is in a state of flux, it would be prudent to follow developments and always seek up to date information.

9 January 2014

Members will be aware of recent media reports in respect of a tanker vessel calling at Libya being confronted by forces of the Libyan Navy. Apparently this incident took place as the vessel was said to have been near to the Port of Es Sider, although this is not confirmed information.

This incident is not the first that the Association has been alerted to, and there were some other incidents during the course of 2013 of a similar nature.

The Association's Correspondents advise that at present there are some ports and areas in Libya which are being occupied by armed groups which are not part of the official security forces of the Libyan Government. These groups may be seeking to finance themselves by selling oil for export. The Libyan Government apparently does not permit these activities and has issued a warning that any vessels calling in Libya must only do so in accordance with Libyan Government regulations and permits.

Any vessel that is found to be in contravention of the orders of the Libyan Government may be met by force from the Libyan security forces.

While the situation in Libya remains volatile and unpredictable, the Association would advise Members planning on trading to Libya to proceed with all due caution and to ensure that any planned voyage does not take the vessel into any area or engage in any activity that would expose her to the risk of being confronted with force or being accused of breaking Libyan laws and regulations.

Any fixtures with Libya as intended destination should include a caveat that ensures a vessel cannot be ordered to a port that may be under some sort of sanction by the Government of Libya, the official security forces, or where the security situation is not sufficiently clear or certain.

The Association is grateful to Ali Gargoum of Gargoum Legal Marine, Benghazi, Libya for contributing to this advisory.