Libya's Oil Minister: We're ready to discuss maritime demarcation with neighboring states
The Minister of Oil and Gas in the Government of National Unity (GNU) Mohammed Oun said in an interview with Al Jazeera Mubashar TV that there are real possibilities to find friendly solutions with countries, such as Greece, Egypt and Cyprus, regarding the demarcation of maritime borders.
Oun said that the world reached an advanced stage of rationing to define maritime borders, either through friendly solutions or through the International Court of Justice, adding that some countries have resorted to unilateral solutions instead of dialogue and consensus.
He explained that maritime laws specified the territorial waters to 12 nautical miles from the first land point of the concerned country, saying that there are specific mechanisms for measuring and separating the distance between any two sea neighboring countries.
Oun indicated that there are huge oil discoveries to be made in the Mediterranean for the benefit of Libya, reiterating that they have a lot of oil reserves that have not yet been discovered on land and in the sea. He noted that geological studies prove the existence of these reserves in the Libyan economic waters, east and west of the Mediterranean.
"The National Oil Corporation (NOC) plans to increase production to two million barrels annually within 3 years, expecting a gradual increase in production between (1.3 and 1.5 million barrels) in 2023, and realizing that this increase depends on the mechanism of activity carried out by the NO and the completion of development activities for oil wells.
The Minister of Oil and Gas added that the government is trying to encourage American companies to return to work in Libya, as the oil and gas sector is based on American technology. He explained that the responses of American officials were positive after they were briefed on the ministry’s vision to lead the Libyan oil sector with high transparency and efficiency to complete future projects, so that the Libyan state's oil and gas production is increased.
On January 2, Oun visited Washington, where he met with US Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources Jeffrey Pyatt, officials of the American company ConocoPhillips, whom he briefed on the ministry's vision to develop the oil and gas sector in Libya.