Qatar, Abu Dhabi Extend Deal for Shared Oil Field Despite Feud

(Bloomberg) -- Qatar Petroleum and the Abu Dhabi Supreme Petroleum Council agreed to extend a concession for a Japanese-operated oil field they share in the Persian Gulf, in a rare display of cooperation amid the political standoff between their two countries.

QP announced the agreement in a statement on its website, without disclosing terms. United Petroleum Development Co., in which Cosmo Energy Holdings Co. and JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration Corp. both hold stakes, owns the business that has operated the offshore Al-Bunduq field since 1970 and will continue to do so under the new deal.

The Qatari and Abu Dhabi governments extended the concession through a technical agreement with the Japanese partner, the Abu Dhabi-based official news agency WAM reported, citing an unidentified official at the Supreme Petroleum Council. “There was no direct contact with the Qatari side, and communication was limited to the Japanese side only,” WAM reported.

Al-Bunduq is shared by Qatar and Abu Dhabi, the capital and largest sheikhdom in the United Arab Emirates, and it exports crude to Japan and other Asian countries. The field pumps 6,500 barrels of oil per day, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

The U.A.E. joined Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain in an embargo of Qatar in June. They accuse Qatar of supporting and funding terrorist groups, accusations that Qatar denies. The U.A.E. and Qatar are both members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, along with Saudi Arabia.

Qatar has continued to supply the U.A.E. with natural gas through an underwater pipeline, in spite of the embargo. Other energy deals between the two countries have been severed since the boycott, including supplies of condensate and liquefied natural gas from Qatar to the U.A.E.

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