Angola and Congo End Maritime Border Dispute

ChevronTexaco plans to search for oil offshore of Angola and the Republic of Congo now that the two countries have reached an agreement over a border dispute. ChevronTexaco will survey an area on the common maritime border of both countries under a deal signed in the Congolese capital Brazzaville late on Tuesday.

The disputed area, on the border between Congolese waters and those of Angola's Cabinda enclave to the south, has been at the center of a disagreement between the two otherwise friendly governments. "This accord is a peaceful way to resolve the problems between the two countries," Angolan Deputy Oil Minister Desiderio Costa said at the signing. Congolese oil minister, Jean Baptiste Tati Loutard, said that after a year of efforts to resolve the dispute both countries had now agreed to bury the hatchet. "We thought the best formula was to exploit it together," he said.

Chevron Congo spokesman Cyrille Mikolo said the group was optimistic of finding new crude reserves. "For the time being there is only the probability of finding oil, which will have to be confirmed by surveys," he said. "If our forecasts turn out to be correct, this will be very important for Chevron, for Congo and for Angola."