Exports of Nigeria’s largest crude oil stream, Qua Iboe, will remain under force majeure for at least one month while operator ExxonMobil repairs a leak on the pipeline feeding the terminal, according to reports.
The damage is the latest setback to Nigerian oil production, which has been hobbled this spring by militant attacks and another accident at the Qua Iboe terminal earlier this year.
Exxon declared force majeure last week, citing a “system anomaly” it observed during a routine check.
According to reports this week the pipeline lost pressure while loading a cargo of crude oil and that the company subsequently discovered a leak on the underwater pipeline.
An Exxon spokesman declined to comment on any leak or a timeline for repairs.
Sources said that repairs needed to fix the leak, which was on part of the pipeline several miles offshore, were more extensive than initially thought and would not begin this week. The force majeure is likely to remain in place for a minimum of one month, several sources said.
Two of Nigeria’s largest fields are now under force majeure, with Shell-operated Forcados crude oil exports halted since a militant attack on its subsea pipeline in February.