In December, Moroccan media reported that a subsidiary of the Libyan state oil company Tamoil had entered into a deal with Morocco for exploration in the occupied Western Sahara .
The company, however, denies the allegations.
"The company denies emphatically some media reports about an oil investment deal in Western Sahara. It did not sign any agreement on oil exploration permits in Western Sahara and it has no plan to invest in any oil operations there", they said to Reuters on December 26th.
See the article below.
Tamoil Africa says wins Chadian oil search permit Wed Dec 26, 2007 http://uk.reuters.com/article/oilRpt/idUKL2629930520071226 TRIPOLI, Dec 26 (Reuters) - Libya-based Tamoil Africa said on Wednesday it had won a licence to explore for oil in Chad but denied media reports it had a plan to invest in oil exploration in the disputed Western Sahara.
"Tamoil Africa had reached a deal with the Chadian government and was awarded an oil exploration permit on three areas Irdiss 1, Idriss 2 and Wadjadou 1 which are located near the border with Libya," it said in a statement.
Tamoil Africa, a diversified energy company active in countries including Egypt, Chad, Niger and Mali, added:
"The company denies emphatically some media reports about an oil investment deal in Western Sahara. It did not sign any agreement on oil exploration permits in Western Sahara and it has no plan to invest in any oil operations there."
Investing in Western Sahara is a sensitive issue for any Libyan company because the Tripoli government takes a neutral stand on the conflict pitting the Algeria-backed Polisario Front independence movement against Morocco. (Reporting by Salah Sarrar; Editing by Ruth Pitchford)
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
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