Argentina has again complained that the Israeli company Navitas Petroleum LP is operating in the Falkland Islands, Malvinas Islands, involved in illegal activities in Argentine insular territory without the pertinent hydrocarbons exploration and exploitation permits from the competent authorities.
The Argentine foreign ministry recalls that back on 18 April 2022, Resolution 240/2022 declared illegal all activities on the Argentine continental shelf by the company Navitas Petroleum LP. Thus the company was declared 'clandestine' for its involvement in hydrocarbon activities in Argentine territory, without the licensing from the competent Argentine authorities and thus barred the company for 20 years from any activity in Argentine territory.
The disqualification was the culmination of an administrative process initiated in January 2020 which included the remittance of a discouragement of activities to the Navitas company, which in July 2022 was definitively notified of the above Resolution through the Argentine embassy in Israel.
Argentine law 26.659 describes conditions for the exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons in the Argentine continental shelf, among which it is mandatory to obtain previous permits to any such activities. Likewise it stipulates sanctions for non compliance, barring such activities for a period of 5 to 20 years, plus other disqualifications.
The same bill also bans the participation, direct or indirect of any legal entity, national or foreign, involved in hydrocarbons activities in the Argentine continental shelf without previously obtaining the authorization from the Argentine competent authority, or others that render support for those developments. This means the effects of this bill are extensive to all companies involved in direct operations with Navitas in its illegal activities in the Argentine continental platform.
The release then enumerates several organizations, Mercosur, Group of 77 plus China and the South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone, which have acknowledged Argentina's right to take legal action, fully respecting International Law and pertinent resolutions against non authorized activities for the exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons in the disputed zone.
Argentina recalls that unilateral activities involving exploration and exploitation of natural resources, developed by UK in the disputed area are contrary to Resolution 31/49 from the UN General Assembly which calls on both sides to abstain from taking decisions that mean unilateral modifications to the situation, while the Islands are in the process recommended by the UN General Assembly.
Finally last March 2nd, while the meeting of G-20 Foreign ministers, which took place in India, Argentine foreign minister Santiago Cafiero met with his UK counterpart James Cleverly and outlined the need for a new bilateral agenda to retake sovereignty negotiations and one of the issues was, measures that can help adjust information, conservation and preservation of natural resources in the area under sovereignty dispute, to what was established in the resolutions from UN General Assembly and the UN Decolonization Committee, or C24.
Following long negotiations in 2021 and 2022, Navitas Petroleum reached an agreement with Rockhopper Exploration by which they align working interests across North Falkland Basin licenses, including the promising Sea Lion project. This means namely Navitas will get a 65% interest, while Rockhopper will hold the remaining 35%. Recently Navitas announced its ambitious plans for 2024. .