Guyana’s offshore exploration for oil in areas contested by neighboring Venezuela is facing setbacks. Natural Resources and Environment Minister Robert Persaud, in making the revelation, said the setbacks are linked to the expulsion and temporary seizure of the Malaysian seismic research vessel, RV Teknik Perdana, by Venezuela’s Navy last year.
Persaud, responding to questions from the Parliamentary Sectoral Committee on Natural Resources, said Guyana is now depending on an eventual resolution in its favor.
“However, we are engaged in the companies who might be affected and we have remained optimistic that those matters will be resolved in a manner that will allow us to continue and proceed with those activities,” he said.
Concerning activities outside of that particular zone “where we had difficulties with Venezuela, those activities have not been hampered in any way, and they in fact are proceeding apace,” the minister said.
Persaud also stated that applications are being processed for additional companies interested in oil exploration and this information will be shared with the committee.
The minister also revealed that the Esso Exploration initiative in collaboration with Shell is on stream and the companies have commenced work.