Following on the Joint Statement adopted by Presidents Obama and Calderon at the conclusion of President Calderonâ€™s State Visit to Washington on May 19, 2010, today, the Governments of the United States and Mexico jointly announce their intention to negotiate an agreement governing the disposition and regulation of hydrocarbon reservoirs that cross our international maritime boundary. Although no entity has yet discovered a trans-boundary reservoir, we deem it important to have a bilateral regulatory regime in place should such a discovery be made in the future.
In the interim, as was announced by Presidents Obama and Calderon in their Joint Statement, both governments have agreed to extend a moratorium on drilling and exploitation in a zone near the continental shelf boundary in an area known as the Western Gap. The moratorium, which was set to expire in January 2011, as per the Western Gap Treaty, has been extended until January 2014 without prejudice to any further extension. Any agreement resulting from our trans-boundary reservoir negotiations will include the Western Gap and take precedence over our joint decision to extend the moratorium in that area.
In light of recent developments in the Gulf of Mexico, both governments deem it vital that we work closely together to regulate hydrocarbon exploration and production activities near our shared maritime boundary in both shallow and deepwater environments, thereby ensuring the efficient and equitable exploitation of trans-boundary reservoirs with the highest degree of safety and environmental standards. We look forward to beginning negotiations in the near future.