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Court draws ocean border favouring Ghana in Ivory Coast dispute

The decade-old row between the two West African neighbours has slowed the development of Ghana’s $6bn offshore TEN field.

FILE: Picture: Pixabay.com.

DAKAR/ACCRA - The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea on Saturday drew an ocean boundary that appeared to favour Ghana in a dispute with its neighbour Ivory Coast, ruling that Accra had not violated Ivorian rights in drilling for oil.

The decade-old row between the two West African neighbours has slowed the development of Ghana’s $6 billion offshore TEN field which is one of the projects in the contested area of the Atlantic Ocean.

“The Special Chamber unanimously finds that Ghana did not violate the sovereign rights of Côte d’Ivoire,” said a statement from the Hamburg-based tribunal sent to reporters.

An official at the court confirmed that the boundary delineated by the tribunal did not correspond with the claim of either party. However, the angle appeared to be closer to the line claimed by Ghana.

”The new boundary “doesn’t look any significantly different from what Ghana had”, said Theo Acheampong, senior analyst at IHS Markit.

It was not immediately clear how the ruling would impact the development of TEN, where Tullow Oil hopes to boost production to 80,000 barrels per day.