San Francisco: ExxonMobil said on Thursday that it had discovered oil and natural gas offshore Guyana. The South American country’s government confirmed the find.
Jeff Simons, Exxon’s country manager in Guyana said a bore hole in the Atlantic Ocean has produced positive results though he would not give more details.
In recent months relations between Guyana, formerly known as British Guiana, and adjacent Venezuela have been tense because of disputes over those waters. Confirmation of a find like this will probably exacerbate things with Guyana’s bigger neighbor to its west.
Despite nearby nations such as Venezuela and the islands of Trinidad and Tobago being energy rich, Guyana u to no had yet to locate a viable source of oil or gas.
Venezuela has long claimed about two-thirds of Guyana’s territory as well as the offshore area where Exxon began drilling in March.
The exploration project is led by Exxon, with fellow American company Hess Corp and a subsidiary of China National Offshore Oil Company also participating.
Irvin, Texas-based oil and gas multinational Exxon signed an agreement with Guyana to explore the 26,800 square kilometre block, 160 to 320 kilometres offshore, in 1999.