EIA estimates Syrian crude shut-ins at 220,000 b/d as of Nov 2012
London (Platts)--22Feb2013/924 am EST/1424 GMT
Syrian crude production fell to 153,000 b/d in October last year from
around 400,000 b/d in March 2011 when the conflict in the country began, with
some 220,000 b/d of production shut in as of November 2012, the US Energy
Information Administration said in a report released late Thursday.
"Average oil production from 2008 to 2010 was stable at approximately
400,000 b/d, but since the combined disruptions of military conflict and
economic sanctions began the average dropped noticeably," the agency said.
"Syria's oil fields remain largely unaffected -- in terms of damage from
fighting and sabotage -- but limited opportunities to export crude and other
liquids, and limited domestic refining capacity, have resulted in shut-in
Citing various reports, the EIA said Syria's oil minister had pegged the
direct and indirect costs of war to the country's oil industry at some $2.9
billion as of October last year.
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"A large portion of this total reflects the loss of Syria's oil exports,
which have been limited by escalating sanctions by the United States,
European Union, and others. Additionally, domestic energy infrastructure --
such as railway networks, oil pipelines, and refineries -- is frequently the
target of attacks, leaving many areas of the country without access to vital
petroleum products," it said.
The agency also noted that, "according to the Syrian government, damage
to the country's energy infrastructure totaled approximately $220 million
through the end of October 2012, with $146 million with of damage to the
electricity sector and more than $70 million worth of damage to oil
"Regionally, the continued violence threatens to derail Syria's
ambitions of becoming an important energy transit country to its neighbors,
the Mediterranean, and Europe," the EIA said.
Domestically, the damage to energy infrastructure and limitations on
imports of petroleum products make it difficult for the country to meet
internal demand, it said.
Furthermore, the agency said, uncertainty over the future of Syria's
energy sector is likely to delay any decisions on investments not already
prohibited under the current sanctions regime.
"Against this backdrop, Syria's energy sector is in a state of disarray,
and the current conflict threatens to set Syria's energy sector back by
years," it said.
--Margaret McQuaile, email@example.com
--Edited by Maurice Geller, firstname.lastname@example.org