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'File 39/24 Seabed concession, Qatar' [‎49r] (97/104)

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The record is made up of 1 file (50 folios). It was created in 23 Dec 1947-17 Dec 1950. It was written in English and Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.


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On 29 th November, Smith and Garrett of the Superior
Oil Company came to Doha. They arrived in the morning, lunched
with Saleh A1 Mana 1 and then went to the Palace to do business
with the Ruler. Abdul Rehman Darwish was also present and the
Ruler sent for Plant to help him too.
2. A long argument then ensued about the three launches
and a car which Superior had said some time ago they would
consider giving to the Ruler. The Ruler was told that a launch
220 feet long was the size of a destroyer and could hot be
gifted as it could be turned into a weapon of war. After much
argument the meeting broke up, as no agreement on the type or
size of launch or car could be reached. The Ruler also put the
point that Superior should have their base in Qatar. This was
strongly rebutted by Smith. In fact Superior did not give way
at all, and the Ruler got nothing.
3 , The same argument took place for a shorter time after
Smith and Garrett had dined with the Ruler. Later Smith and
Garrett went univited to the Adviser*s house and went over the
same arguments. Smith then asked if Plant was anything to do
with H.M.G. On receiving the answer that he was a servant of
the Ruler, Smith produced a draft agreement between the Ruler
and Superior to lengthen the period of exploratary work before
drilling (Article 6 of the Concession) from two years to three
years. i%e==Rqlro r as aid he would do nothing but consider it and
put the point to the Ruler. After dinding me out at 9 S>.m.,
Smith and Garrett left at 7 a.m. the next day.
This draft agreement gives the following reasons for
extension of the period:-
1. The distance from source of material (USA)
to Qatar.
2. The time needed by Governments to define the
boundaries of the Concession.
3. The tide and Shamals.
Phe Adviser told me all the above, and asked whether had
p-iven their approval under article 29 # 1 told him that I had no
information. He said that Smith said he had asked the Foreign
Office who said that if he wanted to negotiate it he could go
ahead. I then told the Adviser that I consider it most unwise
for him to put Superior’s case to the Ruler: he should by all
means advise the Ruler if he got the opnortunity, but should
leave to Superior their own negotiating*
5 The Adviser spoke to the Ruler about the agreement the
next day, and suggested that he thought the matter over and not
sign anything in a hurry.
On Friday Abdul Rehman Darwish went to Bahrain, and
mith has since told me that he went there on behalf of the Ruler
o sav there was still a chance of getting the question of the
aunches and car settled if Smith could return. Abdullah Darwish
aw Smith in Bahrain and when asked said he thought that it was
ie:ht that the two years period should be extended. By then
uperior had got Saleh and Darwish on their side, but had not
hemselves put the Question to the Ruler, and Smith was thus
illing to retunn to Doha in the afternoon of 1st December.
7. The next,.

About this item


The file contains correspondence, mostly in English and Arabic, between the Ruler of Qatar, Shaikh ‘Abdullāh bin Jāsim Āl Thānī (from August 1949 Shaikh ‘Alī bin ‘Abdullāh Āl Thānī); the Ruler of Bahrain, Shaikh Salmān bin Ḥamad Āl Khalīfah; the Adviser to the Government of Bahrain and the Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. at Bahrain; regarding the jurisdiction over the seabed adjacent to the coastline, for the purpose of oil drilling offshore. The papers include a dispute between the Ruler of Qatar and Petroleum Development Qatar Ltd on the interpretation of the oil concession with regard to the Qatar coastal waters and Decision of Arbitrators (folios 13-19).

The file also contains correspondence with the Ruler of Qatar and Superior Oil Company, concerning the Company’s request for permission to drill in the shoals represented on folio 41, and considering claims of the Ruler of Bahrain over the same shoals.

Extent and format
1 file (50 folios)

The papers in the file are arranged chronologically.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the main foliation sequence commences at the front cover with 1 and terminates at the back cover with 52; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio. An additional incomplete foliation sequence is also present in parallel between ff 2-51; these numbers are written in a combination of pencil and ink, but are not circled, and are located in the same position as the main sequence.

Written in
English and Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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'File 39/24 Seabed concession, Qatar' [‎49r] (97/104), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/2/891, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 29 March 2020]

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