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Statement by Minister Seko on Renewal of the Concession on an Abu Dhabi Offshore Oilfield by a Japanese Company

February 26, 2018

  1. Yesterday, INPEX Corporation signed an agreement with the government of Abu Dhabi and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and was awarded a 10% participating interest in the Lower Zakum concession on offshore oilfields in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the coming 40 years.
  2. The offshore oil fields in Abu Dhabi, including the Lower Zakum Oil Field, are some of the largest oilfields in the world boasting bountiful reserves. INPEX Corporation has participated in the development of this offshore oilfield for 46 years since 1972 through its 100%-owned subsidiary, Japan Oil Development Co., Ltd. At this time, it was decided that INPEX Corporation would continue its participation in the development of the Lower Zakum Oil Field. I understand that the participating interest is the largest awarded for a single company among many other foreign rival companies seeking interests. I expect that INPEX Corporation will lead foreign companies in the future development and operation of the oilfield.
  3. Last December, Prime Minister Abe held a telephone conference with H.H. General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, and I visited Abu Dhabi three times over the year: in January and October 2017 and in January 2018. In this manner, high-level initiatives have been continued with the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. Additionally, Japan has offered cooperation in all aspects of the oil-and-gas-related fields, in which Abu Dhabi has shown great interest, as well as in a broad range of fields such as education, medicine and agriculture. In addition to the past business performance of and trust in Japanese companies, our sincere cooperative attitudes and close mutual relationships at various levels positively impacted the recent decision on the renewal of the oil concession. I think this is a great success story for resource diplomacy of Japan.
  4. The award of the participating interest means that a Japanese company will be the primary partner of one of the largest oilfields in Abu Dhabi for the coming 40 years. I understand that this is a strong commitment from Abu Dhabi to build a comprehensive partnership with Japan into the future. The government of Japan will make efforts to strengthen bilateral economic relationships in order to fully meet their expectations.

Division in Charge

Petroleum and Natural Gas Division, Natural Resources and Fuel Department, Agency for Natural Resources and Energy

Last updated:2018-03-06
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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