Thorough overhaul

Published: Friday 30 September 2005

With a promise to make Turkmenistan's oil and gas sector more organised, both to benefit the country itself as well as foreign collaborators, Turkmen president Niyazov introduced sweeping structural changes in the sector on August 22, 2005. Turkmenistan's law on hydrocarbon resources was amended to give direct contractual powers to its ministry of oil and gas industry and mineral resources. For this, the phrase "competent authority" was replaced by the ministry's name in the entire text of the law. The ministry can now directly supervise the three main wings of the country's oil and gas complex.

"Minister of oil and gas should have three deputies...Every month you should report on the progress on foreign agreements monthly the production...," said Niyazov. He also ordered the formation of a council on oil and gas exploration and urged for an increase in exploration activities.

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