Discoveries of oil and gas have been made off the coast of Beirut and Mount Lebanon, caretaker Energy Minister Gebran Bassil said in remarks published Saturday.
"There is a recent discovery of abundant quantities of oil and gas in the maritime zone off the coasts of Mount Lebanon and Beirut that extend at their northern and southern rims," he told Al-Akhbar daily.
Bassil said that the new oil discovery was "scientific proof of the variety of our oil and gas resources."
The minster also said that new studies conducted in the field revealed large quantities of oil and gas in both areas "that we need to know how to invest properly."
Earlier this year, Lebanon officially launched its first oil and gas licensing round with 46 international energy companies prequalifying to bid for offshore exploration contracts.
Bassil has called on the caretaker Cabinet and Parliament to hold extraordinary sessions to approve the oil sector decrees.
The decrees, demarcating 10 maritime oil exploration blocks and establishing a revenue-sharing model, require Cabinet approval before oil and gas contracts can be awarded.
Beirut The Daily Star