Somali President Farmaajo, PM Roble disown oil deal with US firm

Sunday February 20 2022
Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo.

Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo. PHOTO | FILE


Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo and Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble have publicly rejected an oil revenue sharing deal signed by the Petroleum Ministry and an American firm.

On Saturday, Petroleum Minister Abdirashid Mohamed Ahmed announced that Somalia had signed a production sharing agreement with Coastline Exploration Ltd (‘Coastline’), a US firm in Texas, to begin work on seven offshore oil blocks.

While the ministry invoked Farmaajo’s support, Villa Somalia rejected the deal moments after it was announced, saying it violates the presidential decree that banned engagements and pacts with foreign entities during election time.

In the statement, the ministry later clarified that the accord is to “launch the exploration” for hydrocarbons in offshore Somalia.

The statement said the accord with Coastline, an upstream oil and gas company focused on East Africa but based in Texas, is the result of recently completed seismic programmes – studies on potential of the oil or natural gas presence.

This indicates that Somalia has the potential to become a significant oil and gas producing country.