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Oil prices at two and a half year high

Continued fighting in Libya keeps prices up.

Oil prices hit their highest level since 2008 after US crude rose to $108.74 this morning, while North Sea Brent crude hit $119.54.

Continued conflict in Libya drove up prices through fears about supply, while Iran - which is the current chair of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) - has refused to sanction an increase in production.

Elsewhere, US regulators have granted approval for BP to continue drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, where work on ten wells was halted after the Deepwater Horizon crisis.

Liam McLaughlin is a freelance journalist who has also written for Prospect and the Huffington Post. He tweets irregularly @LiamMc108.