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Updated: May 22, 2012 11:23 IST

And now, an offer of oil from Puntland

Sandeep Dikshit
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With virtually the entire east coast of Africa is found to contain hydrocarbon deposits, the tiny Puntland, which is a nation and yet not a nation, is no exception. Its President Abdirahman Mohamed Mohamud Farolez on Wednesday held talks in New Delhi on the recent find in Puntland of large quantity of oil.

He invited Indian companies to participate in the exploration and sought New Delhi's cooperation for charting out exploration blocks and training Somalis in the petroleum sector.

The Puntland region is unique — it seeks unity of the Somali people and adheres to a federal system of government unlike the secessionist region of Somaliland to its west. Puntland is not trying to obtain international recognition as a separate nation.

The visit was not due to normal diplomatic exertions. During Minister of State for External Affairs E. Ahamed's participation in the international conference on Somalia in London in February, he met the Transitional Federal Government leadership, Presidents of Puntland and Gulmudug and representatives of other groups. During the meeting, Mr. Farolez expressed his desire to visit India. An invitation was duly extended. Mr. Farolez's official engagements included calls on Mr. Ahamed and Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas R.P.N. Singh, during which he was told that India would favourably consider the proposal for gas exploration and training.

With Mr. Ahamed, the President also sought Indian assistance to train his people in the fisheries sector, education, training, small and medium-scale enterprises and issues related to piracy.

Facing the twin scourges of piracy and terrorism, Puntland has been able to eradicate piracy activities from key coastal towns, including the former piracy hub of Eyl. The government has deployed anti-piracy forces (the Puntland Maritime Police Force) at Eyl and plans to send the force to other coastal towns. In 2010, Puntland Parliament passed Somalia's first-ever anti-piracy law. Speaking at a public engagement on Tuesday, Mr. Farolez said the Indian assistance was vital to ensure alternative likelihood for coastal communities affected by piracy and illegal fishing and reviving fishing activity that had been disrupted. “ We believe assistance and working partnership between Puntland institutions and the international community, particularly the Indian Ocean region, will be an efficient option to finally defeat piracy.”

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Puntland has been atonomous state since 1998 and faroole is the third president elected democratically, while the rest of south Somalia was in chaos and endless tribal conflict and the ties between india and puntland will be benefit for both countries, since India is hungry for energy and Puntland needs expertise and education to develope its population.....

Posted on: May 20, 2012 at 14:49 IST

I'm from Puntland , we are happy to make good relationship to India, and we are welcoming indian investment to the puntland, such oil and mining , becouse the Puntland state of Somalia is very rich for oil and minerals.
Puntland is not far from India, we hope to do good relationship , such like Education,Health, Energy, Fishing,livestock, Capacity building for the state Puntland.
we say thank you Mr President.

from:  Mohammad Dhahar
Posted on: May 18, 2012 at 16:12 IST

As a Somali educated in India I welcome every assisstance from indian goverment and its bussiness community to help Somalia. India should wake up and stand up to assisst Somalia for the benefit of both countries.

from:  Janagale
Posted on: May 18, 2012 at 14:11 IST

As a Somali person,always India is in our hearts,even Somali bush people know India ,this is a historical facts based on trade,what we need from India in this short time frame is Indian teaching elite groups to go ahead to those areas to teach,educate young Somalis ,its the time for India to sharpen its role in east African coastal communities (Somali ethnic group).

from:  abdul
Posted on: May 18, 2012 at 06:56 IST

To Ali Jama. We Know U from THe South And We dont know whether u Are alshabaab or warlords bt what we know is u are against The Development Of puntland state of somalia.
As A puntland people we are moving ahead we passed the civil ware seaseon its now in ur home place plz save mogadisho from bombs
H.E Faroole long Live I really appreciated wht u have done. Indian People Thank u very much
Sandeep Dikshit its pleasure for us to know the situation of somalai The Way U know us is Unbleivble thank u
Indians thank u again we need to move forward

from:  Osman
Posted on: May 18, 2012 at 00:13 IST

Somalia( various regions) is known to have Abundant Oil, natural gas and other mineral reserves. International Oil corporations proved existence of major Oil and Gas Reserves in both On and off-shore Puntland. I applaud President Farole's efforts to market the nation's natural resources to the developing economies of China and India. The entire population of Somalia will benefit from such bilateral economic/commercial ties. I hope the president visits China while he is still in that neck of the woods. Way to go Mr. President; keep up the good work.

from:  Abdidahir M. Yusuf
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 18:35 IST

Puntland is part of Somalia, that has enjoyed a peace for the last 20 years while the south was in chaos,Unlike Somaliland Puntland is not a sessionist entity. The natural resources found in Punland will be shared by all Somalia citizens, negotiations are ongoing on what share will the state residents get and what will the central government in Mogadishu known as the Federal government will get. Before that mineral and oil explorations will continue. Punland all the Northern Somalia coast is an area known to have trade and commercial links with India for centuries so there is no problem in strengthening that relationship in the 21st century in a civilized manner.

from:  Abdirizak Hassan
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 14:46 IST

Ali Jama: Either you are not up-to-date on the current political situation in Somalia or you have a political axe to grind. Somalia is now organised on a federal system, with three semi-autonomous states - one of which is Puntland. Farole was elected by an open and democratic process. Puntland leaders have recently approved a constition for Puntland and a further conference has approved the federal constitution recognising the devolved powers of the three states.
Whilst Puntland indeed 'remains part and parcel of Somalia' it is certainly NOT 'non-existent'. As a disinterested independent observer it seems to me that Farole is leading the way in terms of consensus and progressiveness. Does anyone (eg Sandeep Dikshit) yet have an answer to the question I posed in my first post .... What is the source for the statement of 'recent find in Puntland of large quantity of oil'. Otherwise this is rumour and conjecture - not befitting of a respected newspaper!

from:  Barry Young
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 13:40 IST

An ideal opportunity from Puntland, is knocking the doors of India. Will India grasp the opportunity or neglet it just like the Hambantota Harbour in Sri Lanka. These opportunities of cause must have a stron naval power to guard the sea routs. While,India could harnes the oil resources for the benifit of the people in the costal lines of Puntland, it gives the much needed impetus to deter the somali pirates. Besides, Indian economy will be in the upward trend with employment for Indians and people of that country. India's involvement, would be a step in the right direction in the competion with China, to extend India's influence in Africa and to benifit India to meet the demand of a growing economy.

from:  Robert Mathew
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 13:29 IST

india is always for assistance smaller nations in their development,more so of finding oil for their own use first and then if agreed for import of such crude oil for internal consumption.Puntland can have a Refinery of its own able supported by Indian ENgineers once a Memorandum of Understanding is signeda and our Foreign Minister should immediately be in touch to extend support to their problem.

from:  vaidya
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 05:27 IST

Puntland is a none existent entity which has been created by remnants of the former dictator of Somalia Barre. The region is known as Majertenia and remains part and parcel of Somalia. It doesn’t have a head of state. I would advise the Indian government to deal with The Somalia transitional regime.

from:  Ali Jama
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 03:39 IST

Interested that the article says that Farole "held talks in New Delhi on the recent find in Puntland of large quantity of oil."

Since there has been no official confirmation, either from the Puntland government or from the commercial oil explorers in Puntland (ie HRN, RRL, RMP) that a 'large quantity of oil' has been found in Puntland, I would be grateful if Sandeep Dikshit would confirm his source for this part of his piece.

from:  Barry Young
Posted on: May 17, 2012 at 01:30 IST
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