(AFP, SANAA) - Yemen's oil revenues are set to reach $1.4 billion in 2000, up 40 percent on 1999, Oil Minister Mohammed al-Khadem al-Wajih said Tuesday.
"Oil revenues for the current year will top $1.4 billion ," he said, quoted by the official SABA news agency.
Yemen's oil revenues hit $ one billion in 1999, double the figure of 1998, thanks to a dramatic recovery in world oil prices.
A non-OPEC producer, Yemen has stepped up exploration and production-sharing agreements with foreign firms to raise its expected output to 700,000 barrels per day (bpd) from the current level of less than 500,000 bpd.
Although one of the poorest countries in the world, Yemen has oil reserves estimated at 4.6 billion barrels and an estimated 420 billion cubic metres (14 trillion cubic feet) in gas.
Wajih also said that the June 12 border agreement it signed with Saudi Arabia had given it ownership of four oil exploration blocks.
Companies from Canada, Hungary, Kuwait and the United States are in competition for concessions on the blocks, which cover some 30,000 square kilometres (12,000 square miles), he said.
© Agence France Presse 2000
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