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Economy, Mining

French oil company, rock salt, alabaster, gas reserves, oil production

Although abundant mineral resources were suspected, most of Yemen remained geologically unexplored until the mid-1980s. In 1984 and 1986, commercial amounts of oil were discovered in the north and south respectively, and the first oil was exported from the north in late 1987. Major oil fields were discovered in two other locations in the early 1990s. As a result, oil production reached 149 million barrels per year in 1999, with significant increases expected by the end of the decade. Yemen also has natural gas fields. Yemen contracted with a French oil company in 1995 to produce up to 5 million metric tons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per year for 25 years. The project, including a pipeline and liquefication plant, is estimated to cost $3 billion and is scheduled to begin producing LNG in 2001. Many analysts believe that if used wisely, known oil and gas reserves could fuel Yemen’s development well into the 21st century. Other mines and quarries in Yemen produce rock salt, limestone, marble, and alabaster.

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French oil company, rock salt, alabaster, gas reserves, oil production, limestone, quarries, barrels, LNG, pipeline, marble, mines, result, century, decade, north, analysts, locations, end, project, years


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