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Falklands’ hydrocarbons policy “is primarily a matter for the Islands”

Tuesday, August 23rd 2011 - 04:18 UTC
Full article 35 comments
Lord Howell, “no negotiations with Argentina over the future exploitation of any oil deposits” found in Falklands’ waters Lord Howell, “no negotiations with Argentina over the future exploitation of any oil deposits” found in Falklands’ waters

The hydrocarbons policy within Falkland Islands waters is primarily a matter for the Falklands government and the UK is in no negotiations with Argentina over the future exploitation of any oil deposits found in the Islands waters, said Lord Howell of Guildford, Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office during question time in the House earlier this month.

In reply to Lord Empey the Foreign Office minister indicated that in spite Argentina has introduced legislation which aims to prevent investment in the Falklands hydrocarbons industry, “we remain keen to foster a constructive relationship with Argentina in the South Atlantic and both we and the Falklands government have offered to cooperate with Argentine on mutually beneficial South Atlantic issues including specific hydrocarbons related matters”.

Asked what communications the UK government has received in the past year from foreign countries concerning the future of the Falkland Islands, Lord Howell of Guildford said that with the exception of Argentina, there had been no other communications, though “the issue is often discussed as part of wider bilateral conversations”.

Lord Howell said that Argentina regularly repeat their request for negotiations on the sovereignty of the Falkland Islands but the UK has a long-standing position, which “we have made consistently clear-including to Argentina-that the UK has no doubt about its sovereignty over the Falkland Islands, and that there will be no negotiations on sovereignty unless or until the Falkland Islanders so wish”.

More specifically on the US government position on the issue, Lord Howell said the US recognises the UK's administration of the Falklands and “this government has continued to make it clear that the UK has no doubt about its sovereignty over the Falkland Islands” and “we raise our position regularly with the US”.

Regarding any presentations from the United Nations on the future of the Falklands Lord Howell said that the UN does not make direct representations to the UK government over the Falkland Islands.

“The UN Special Committee on Decolonisation (C24) operates as a subsidiary of the United Nations General Assembly and discusses the Falkland Islands annually, most recently in June 2011. The last time the General Assembly discussed the Falkland Islands was 1988. The last time the United Nations Security Council discussed the Falkland Islands was 1982”.

Finally the Foreign Office minister said the Falklands’ government is responsible for the issue of licences for the exploration of minerals in waters surrounding the Islands.

“Policy on mineral exploration in Falklands’ waters is primarily a matter for the Falkland Islands Government (FIG): the natural resources of a UK overseas territory belong to that territory. Licences are granted by the FIG, subject to the consent of the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs” underlined Lord Howell of Guildford.
 

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  • Redhoyt

    Another nail in the coffin of Argentine pretensions .... chuckle, chuckle :-)

    Aug 23rd, 2011 - 05:25 am 0
  • stick up your junta

    pick the bones out of that :-)

    Aug 23rd, 2011 - 07:52 am 0
  • Islander1

    Totally! But one needs to explain before the rants from marcos and others start that The UK is required to give ultimate approval for hydrocarbon operations just like it is for fisheries - very simply because UK is the ulimate authority and is recognized as such by the UN and is formally required by the UN to excercise due control over good governance standards,democracy, and environmental safety - and that is where it ends - FIG operates to good standards of legal and environmental practice - and thus FIG makes the decisions - and collects the revenue if any - full stop.

    Aug 23rd, 2011 - 10:07 am 0
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