Gambia’s oil minister, Fafa Sanyang said the West African nation will not renew African Petroleum licenses and ready to face the exploration company in court.
African Petroleum CEO Jen Pence said the Norway-listed firm is taking The Gambia to arbitration over rights to the A1 and A4 offshore oil blocks.
“We are not afraid of their threat to take us to court; we are on the right track,” Mr. Sanyang told The Point Newspaper.
“It was agreed if they did not drill the blocks and there was no exploration their license would not be renewed, and that was the case.”
Gambian authorities say African Petroleum failed to fulfill its obligations. Gambia’s neighbor Senegal, which also revoked their license said they failed to meet their commitments there as well.
African Petroleum is open to talks with Gambian authorities, who shut doors to any negotiations that will see the exploration company’s license renewed.
“Our position is very clear: they did not fulfill their work obligation as agreed; their license expired in September last year, and they asked for an extension which was not approved,” said Sanyang.