The USA and Mexico have agreed to work together when drilling for oil and gas that goes beyond the shared maritime boundary. The US secretary of State Hilary Clinton and The Mexican Foreign Secretary signed the deal yesterday in the presence of the Mexican President Felipe Calderon and the US Interior Minister Ken Salazar.
The new agreement follows from an earlier agreement signed in 2010, which set out terms to share profits and work together to deal with spills. The agreement is necessary because oil reserves frequently cross international boundaries and this agreement sets clear rules and boundaries as to how the reserves are to be exploited, hopefully it should alleviate fears from both sides of the border about misappropriation of resources.
Hilary Clinton said the deal would “ensure safe, efficient, responsible exploration of the oil and gas reservoirs in the Gulf of Mexico.”
The agreement allows US companies to partner with Mexico’s national oil company in drilling. If neither government can agree on how to exploit a reserve then they are free to take their share unilaterally.
The US Interior Department has stated that the agreement will open up nearly 1.5million acres of the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf for further exploration and production. Potentially the area could hold up to 172 million barrels o foil and 304 billion ft3 of natural gas.