Oman sub­mits ap­pli­ca­tion to UN to ex­tend its con­ti­nen­tal shelf

Suc­cess­ful sub­mis­sion will give Oman rights over a large area for oil and gas ex­plo­ration

Muscat Daily - - FRONT PAGE -

Oman has sub­mit­ted a for­mal ap­pli­ca­tion to ex­tend its con­ti­nen­tal shelf to the United Na­tions Di­vi­sion for Ocean Af­fairs and Law of the Sea.

A suc­cess­ful sub­mis­sion will give the sul­tanate ex­clu­sive rights over a large area of seabed in the Ara­bian Sea be­yond its 200-mile Ex­clu­sive Eco­nomic

Zone (EEZ), and the right to ex­plore for oil and gas and other re­sources.

The sul­tanate’s per­ma­nent rep­re­sen­ta­tive to the United Na­tions, H E Sheikh Khal­ifa bin Ali al Harthy, sub­mit­ted the ap­pli­ca­tion on Oc­to­ber 26.

The process re­quires a de­tailed science-based sub­mis­sion to be com­piled and then pre­sented to the United Na­tions demon­strat­ing the link be­tween

Oman’s land­mass and its off­shore con­ti­nen­tal shelf area be­yond 200 nau­ti­cal miles from its coast­line.

Oman had em­barked on pro­ce­dures to ex­tend the con­ti­nen­tal shelf in 2009 and con­tracted with the best in­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies to as­sist in the prepa­ra­tion of this file. Ac­cord­ing to the UN, a coastal coun­try, which proves its right as per the re­quire­ments of the United Na-

tions Com­mis­sion on the Lim­its of the Con­ti­nen­tal Shelf, may ex­tend its con­ti­nen­tal shelf up to a max­i­mum of 350 nau­ti­cal miles from the base point.

With a suc­cess­ful sub­mis­sion, sul­tanate will get the right to ex­plore the non-liv­ing re­sources (oil, gas and min­er­als), in ad­di­tion to con­duct­ing sci­en­tific re­search and cre­at­ing a data­base for the ben­e­fit of its econ­omy.

Oman’s Con­ti­nen­tal Shelf Bound­aries Ex­ten­sion Com­mit­tee was formed in 2008 fol­low­ing a de­ci­sion of the Coun­cil of Min­is­ters to fol­low up on the is­sue.

In 2013, Oman had signed a

con­sul­tancy and su­per­vi­sion ser­vices con­tract with New Zealand-based GNS for ex­tend­ing the outer lim­its of its con­ti­nen­tal shelf.

In 2015, Oman had awarded a

con­tract to Sin­ga­pore-based com­pany Gard­line CGG to help pro­vide sur­vey ves­sels for the con­ti­nen­tal shelf ex­ten­sion project. EEZ is a sea zone pre­scribed by the United Na­tions Con­ven-

tion on the Law of the Sea over which a state has spe­cial rights re­gard­ing the ex­plo­ration and use of ma­rine re­sources, in­clud­ing en­ergy pro­duc­tion from wa­ter and wind.

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