Morocco to Sign Three Oil, Gas Exploration Deals Next Month, Official Says

Morocco will sign three or four oil and natural-gas exploration agreements with international companies next month, said M’Hammed El Moustaine, director of exploration at the government’s energy regulatory body.

Office National Des Hydrocarbures et Des Mines, also known as ONYM, is currently in negotiations with the companies over six offshore and onshore blocks, El Moustaine said in an interview in Marrakech, declining to identify the companies.

“The value of the contracts will depend on the talks and the characteristics of the blocks under negotiation,” he said.

Morocco wants to attract more foreign companies to explore for oil and gas to increase its energy supply security as energy consumption is expected to grow by between 5 percent and 6 percent a year, according to El Moustaine.

There are 28 foreign companies working in Morocco, including Circle Oil Plc and Repsol YPF SA, both of which made small discoveries, El Moustaine said.

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