Tullow Oil has announced that it has been advised by the Government of Ghana that the Government of Côte d'Ivoire has applied for provisional measures to be ordered in Ghana's maritime boundary dispute with Côte d'Ivoire, which is in arbitration before a Special Chamber of the International Tribunal of the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) in Hamburg.
The provisional measures application includes a request that ITLOS orders Ghana to suspend ongoing exploration and exploitation operations in the disputed area in which the TEN project is situated until ITLOS gives its full verdict which is expected towards the end of 2017. Tullow understands that a decision on this application for provisional measures should be handed down before the end of April 2015.
This arbitration was commenced by Ghana in 2014 in an effort to resolve a dispute with regard to the maritime boundary between Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire. Tullow's advice from external counsel is that Ghana has a strong case under international law that the current boundary location, which follows an equidistance line, will be upheld by ITLOS in accordance with the Law of the Sea Convention to which both states are party. Work on the TEN project continues and remains on schedule and on budget for first oil in mid-2016.
Aidan Heavey, Chief Executive Officer of Tullow Oil, commented today:
“Tullow has long had interests in and strong relationships with both Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire and we have conducted our operations in both countries in line with our obligations as a contractor under our Petroleum Agreements and in accordance with international operating standards. Although the arbitration process allows for an application of provisional measures, it is our view that it is in the best interest of all parties that the TEN project continues to move ahead without delay and unencumbered by legal tactics of this nature.”
Adapted from a press release by David Bizley