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PNZ patch-up raises offshore gas hopes

Belated reconciliation over acreage shared with Saudi Arabia offers relief for Kuwait's flagging oil expansion efforts

The energy ministers of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia met in the border town of Khafji in late December to seal settlement of a prolonged dispute over management of the Partitioned Neutral Zone (PNZ)—a 5,700km² (2,200 square miles) of contiguous onshore and offshore acreage shared equally for nearly a century.  The quarrel flared-up in the second half of 2014, triggering closure of the producing Khafji and Wafra fields. It centred on the Saudi decision to outsource operation of the kingdom's onshore PNZ interests to Chevron—a level of foreign involvement in upstream activity anathema domestically to both states, but especially so to Kuwait.  Khafji, operated by a joint venture between the respec

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