Foreign oil giant to explore in the seas of Palawan
PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Aug. 11 (PNA) –Forum Energy Company (FEC), a United Kingdom-based gas and oil exploration and production company with a portfolio of projects in the Philippines, is reportedly interested in exploring for oil and natural gas in the waters within the disputed West Philippines Sea.
According to information release by the provincial government on Wednesday, the expression of interest was made and presented by the FEC to the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development (PCSD) on August 2 at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan Session Hall in front of Governor Jose Alvarez and the board of directors.
The FEC is the holder of Service Contract Nos. 40 and 72 and is authorized to look for oil and gas 18 nautical miles off the waters of Palawan in the West Philippines Sea area.
Alvarez, who reportedly listened and watched the presentation, assured the FEC that it would not hinder its exploration, particularly adding that the PCSD would be supportive of pro-development projects where the people of the province can benefit from.
He also encouraged the members of the PCSD to move fast in making decisions on project proposals that can provide Palawan shares for the development of its projects and programs.
“If a new deposit of oil and gas is discovered in Palawan, the province can have shares from income generated from this that can help fund other development projects and programs,” Alvarez said.
As chair of the PCSD, he also reminded FEC to be cautious and careful in the exploration to avoid oil spillage, destruction of corals, and other similar incidents, because he would not allow them to happen and they will be made to answer just in case.
Meanwhile, Col. Emmanuel Salamat, chief of staff of the Western Command (Wescom) and representative of Maj. Gen. Rustico Guerrero, said FEC has nothing to worry about in terms of exploring for oil and gas in the disputed West Philippines Sea since security in the area is paramount in the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
He reportedly assured the FEC that it could conduct its exploration safely, and with utmost support from the Wescom.
The FEC also has a 2.27% interest through its wholly-owned subsidiary Forum Energy Philippines Corporation (FEPC) in the second phase development of the Galoc oil field under SC-14.
As joint venture participants in the Galoc field, Forum Energy and FEPC, together with Otto and a subsidiary of Otto, have entered into a facility agreement with BNP Paribas (the “Facility Agreement”) to provide a total of US$ 40 million project financing for the Galoc field’s Phase II development. (PNA)