December 16, 2018 / 1:51 PM / a month ago

UPDATE 1-Oman signs exploration agreements with Occidental Petroleum

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DUBAI, Dec 16 (Reuters) - Oman signed on Sunday two agreements giving a unit of Occidental Petroleum the rights to explore for oil and natural gas in concessions 51 and 65, the oil ministry of the sultanate said in a tweet.

Oil Minister Mohammed bin Hamad al-Rumhi signed the agreement covering concession 51 with Occidental Oman and the agreement on concession 65 with Occidental Oman and Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production, a unit of state-owned Oman Oil Co, the tweet said.

Concession 51 covers 10,133 square kilometres (3,912.37 square miles) and concession 65 covers 1,230 square kilometres (474.91 square miles), Omani state TV said in a report.

The agreement provides for Occidental to spend $14 million on exploration operations in concession 51 in the initial three-year phase of the contract, Salman al-Shehhi, the oil ministry's director of investment, told state TV.

Oman's oil output is about 995,000 barrels per day. The sultanate is not a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries but it took part in an agreement reached by OPEC and other exporters earlier this month to reduce global supply in order to bolster oil prices. (Reporting by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle and Mark Potter)

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