Ministry defends drilling off Malaga coast

COMPLAINTS against proposed drilling off the Malaga coast have been dismissed by the Ministry of Industry which is set to go ahead with the project. The Ministry has defended the decision to give Canadian company CNWL Oil the go-ahead to drill for gas and petrol off the coast of Malaga.

The Mayors of Malaga, Torremolinos, Benalmadena, Fuengirola and several in the Axarquia area have also criticised the decision, for the detrimental impact they believe it will have on tourism.

The mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, reminded locals that the council in Malaga had approved a motion last June by which no operation of this type would be allowed in the area, having seen what happened in the Gulf of Mexico.

Complaints were also made by representatives of the tourism sector, fishermen, local residents and environmentalists,

CNWL Oil requested permission from the ministry four years ago after studies revealed the geological potential of the Malaga, Granada and Almeria area.

Spanish company Repsol is also awaiting approval of an environmental impact study from the Ministry for the Environment, in order to drill off the coasts of Mijas and Fuengirola.

Meanwhile, the mayor of Mijas, asked locals not to be alarmists, and recalled that the Ministry of the Environment has only given the go-ahead for exploration, not prospection, and claimed that all safety measures would be taken.

The central Government defends the strategic and economic advantages for Spain which imports 99.5 per cent of its gas and petrol.


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