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  • Pumpjacks are seen against at the Daqing oil field in Heilongjiang province, China, Dec. 7, 2018.

    Pumpjacks are seen against at the Daqing oil field in Heilongjiang province, China, Dec. 7, 2018. | Photo: Reuters

Published 27 March 2019

The Caribbean island seeks to apply state-of-the-art knowledge for developing its mining sector.

China's Geological Service (GS) and Cuba's Institute of Geology and Paleontology (IGP) signed Tuesday a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to investigate minerals and make a geochemical map of the island, with the aim of detecting new oil fields and gas. 

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GS vice president Wang Yan explained that the MoU contains cooperation projects to investigate minerals such as zeolite, nickel and chromium. Also, the bilateral partnership includes the exchange of scientific and technical information, field studies, symposia, conferences, workshops, and joint projects, among others.

Scientific cooperation will be developed in such areas as basic geology, geochemical and geophysical mapping, remote sensing, geoinformation technology, geobase data, mineral resource evaluation and exploration technology, environmental geology, marine geology and geohazards.

The IGP General Director Luis Gomez Narbona indicated that bilateral cooperation is expected to begin with an agreement aimed at preparing a Cuban geochemical map.

This initiative will also encompass research aimed at mapping variables related to agriculture and environmental protection.

“A MoU on earth sciences collaboration was signed today in Havana by representatives of the Geological Service of the People's Republic of China and the Institute of Geology and Paleontology (IGP) of Cuba.”

This new agreement with China is preceded by the efforts made by Cuba to relaunch its oil prospecting projects, both in deep and shallow waters, with the help of foreign capital. These actions seek to reduce Cuba's energy dependence on energy imports.

Representatives of the Chinese government will also sign an MoU with the Cuban Petroleum Research Center (Cupet).

According to the Cuban News Agency, the Cuban Council of Ministers approved new legal norms for the country's geology policy in August 2018. These rules establish that scientific knowledge is the main element for the development of economic activities in the mining sector. In addition, Decree 345 established guidelines for scientific research and created the National Council of Geology.

The development of earth sciences in Cuba has also been fostered by the Cuban Geological Society (SCG), a NGO which is inviting foreign professionals, technicians and university students of geology, geophysics, mining and related sciences, to participate in the 8th Edition of the Earth Sciences Convention in Havana, an event which is to be hold from April 1 to 5.

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