New delay for Faroes

February 2, 1999, 08:00 CET

A first offshore licensing round for the Faroes is now planned for this autumn, reports petroleum minister Eydun Elttør.

The round should originally have been opened last year, and was subsequently postponed until the first half of 1999.

But a long-standing dispute with the UK over mutual boundary lines in the "white zone" area of the North Atlantic remains unresolved. The Faroese authorities have accordingly resolved on a further delay.

A foreign policy statement presented recently by Faroes prime minister Anfinn Kallsberg to the Lagting (parliament) suggested that a solution to the conflict is likely to be achieved in the fairly near future.

"At the beginning of 1999, it looks as if informal talks will lead to a conclusion," he said. "But some formulations for elements in a solution remain to be agreed."