Amoco withdraws from Latvia

  • 1998-08-27
RIGA (BNS, LETA) - Management of the U.S. company Amoco Corporation notified the Latvian government officials that the firm is withdrawing from the oil deposits research project in the Baltic Sea.

According to Amoco's statement, the corporation is changing its strategy and will orient to other world regions.

Due to its changing strategy Amoco is also halting operations in Denmark and Poland, and is also planning to withdraw from projects in Russia.

The corporation has promised to help Latvia chose another internationally acknowledged company capable of taking over Amoco's obligations to continue exploratory drillings and geological research.

The corporation named Latvia's failure to sign an agreement with Lithuania on the division of the continental shelf in the Baltic Sea as another reason for its withdrawal.

The Latvian government signed the agreement with Amoco and the Swedish company OPAB in the fall of1995, but the agreement did not take effect because the border agreement between Latvia and Lithuania was not signed. OPAB has been notified about Amoco's decision to withdraw.

Latvia and Lithuania are negotiating their sea boarder since 1993, but so far have been unable to sign the border agreement. Each country wants to gain territorial rights over the possible oil deposits in the Baltic Sea.

Latvian Foreign Minister Valdis Birkavs announced Latvia has not managed to find a foreign company to take over Amoco's position.

Birkavs, though, said there are a couple of foreign companies that want to participate in this project.

Birkavs said it was clear the U.S company lost interest in this project in 1997 after he met with Lithuanian Foreign Minister Algirdis Saudargs and U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright in Vilnius.

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