Oman hires New Zealand consultancy firm for continental shelf extension

640px-Oman east coast 1The Omani government has appointed New Zealand-based GNS Science as consultant and supervisor for the extension of the outer limits of the sultanate’s continental shelf

According to Muscat Daily, the agreement was signed by the Oman minister of foreign affairs H E Yousuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah, the head of the Continental Shelf and Maritime Affairs Office Ambassador Salim bin Abdullah al Alawi and GNS Science general manager Michel Macholemes.

Al Alawi said the project was very important for the security and economic development of Oman.

As per United Nations regulations, a coastal country can extend its continental shelf up to 350 nautical miles from the base point for exploration of oil and gas and other mineral resources.

Oman’s Continental Shelf Boundaries Extension Committee includes members from the ministries of defence, interior, agriculture and fisheries, oil and gas, environment and climate affairs, transport and communications as well as Sultan Qaboos University and the Royal Oman Police.

The committee is expected to hire an international firm that owns vessels specialising in maritime surveys for its project in the coming days, the newspaper reported.

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