African Legal Support Facility (ALSF) has approved a $465,040 grant to the
Government of The Gambia.
This grant is for the provision of advisory and capacity building services in
connection with the review of model petroleum exploration and production licensing agreements and their negotiation in The Gambia by the Ministry of Petroleum & Energy.
Under this project the Ministry is pleased to be assisted by the local law firm Amie Bensouda & Co LP and the international law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP).
The law firms will work in close cooperation with Open Oil UG, who are an Oil & Gas consultancy company, which is internationally recognised for providing a platform for natural resource fiscal terms and has substantial financial analysis and modelling expertise as well as Mr Richard Weightman and Steven Dow, who worked for more than 30 years in various senior roles for some of the leading Oil & Gas companies in the world
This multi-disciplinary team has a significant experience of working in Africa and in the international Oil & Gas sector and combine, legal, technical, financial and practical expertise that will position The Gambia to successfully develop a modern, relevant and competitive Petroleum Licence.
This team will also capacitise the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and support the Government of The Gambia to evaluate and shortlist the growing and impressive number of international oil and gas companies that have expressed an interest in exploiting the Gambian oil blocks.
“We expect that the Ministry of Petroleum, with the support of the African Legal Support Facility team, will in due course successfully negotiate and agree licences for the remaining 6 oil blocks in including A1 & A4, in the best interest of the country and that we will be able to announce the successful completion of this project for the Gambian people,” a source at the Energy ministry said.
“The Government approach is consistent with best practice, transparent, open, fair and in the best interest of the Gambian people.”
Furthermore, it is expected early next year award of licence for the open blocks will be made.
So far there is lot of interest from credible international oil companies (IOCs) on the blocks.
The government is currently reviewing the model licences to be in line with current international standards.