By Christopher Johnson
Production from Libya's 270,000 bpd Sharara field is returning to normal after a disruption when protesters broke into a control room, the National Oil Corp said.
Libya is exempt from limits on production agreed by most other members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries designed to bolster oil prices that have been depressed for more than three years by a global glut.
Oil production remains high in many parts of the world and fuel prices are around half the level seen in 2011-2014.
Benchmark Brent crude was down 40 cents a barrel at $51.97 a barrel by 1330 GMT. U.S. light crude was 40 cents lower at $48.99.
"Support is coming from a stabilising U.S. rig count, falling U.S. inventories and the Saudi cut in exports," Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Denmark's Saxo Bank, told the Reuters Global Oil Forum.
"But against this we still have robust production growth from the United States, Libya and Nigeria."
A recent recovery in Libya's oil output, and higher production in Nigeria, have complicated OPEC's efforts to curb supply, fuelling doubts over the effectiveness of agreed cuts.
Officials from a joint OPEC and non-OPEC technical committee met in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday to discuss ways to increase compliance with the deal to cut 1.8 million bpd in production.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration, part of the Energy Department, will release its weekly petroleum status report at 1430 GMT on Wednesday, giving details on stockpiles and refinery runs.
U.S. crude inventories were expected to have posted their sixth straight weekly decline last week, while refined product stockpiles probably fell too, a preliminary Reuters poll showed on Monday. [EIA/S]
Oil output in the United States has risen this year, although Baker Hughes data on Friday showed a cut of one drilling rig in the week to Aug. 4.
(Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein in Singapore and Aaron Sheldrick in Tokyo; editing by David Clarke/Jason Neely/Alexander Smith)
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)