East Timor to terminate oil and gas treaty

East Timor is set to tear up an oil and gas treaty signed with Australia in 2006, which relates to the maritime border between the countries and up to $40 billion in royalties.

The dispute over the maritime border has been heard in the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, following accusations of espionage levelled against Australia.

In a joint statement released by the Government of East Timor and the Government of Australia yesterday, both countries have agreed to the Treaty on Certain Maritime Arrangements in the Timor Sea would no longer apply following a three-month transition period.

“The Government of Australia has taken note of this wish and recognises that Timor-Leste has the right to initiate the termination of the treaty,” read the statement.

The statement also indicated that a permanent maritime boundary will be negotiated between the two countries down the track.

The agreement has been welcomed by Woodside Energy, whose interest in the Greater Sunrise gas fields near East Timor was affected by the ongoing dispute.

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