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Coll 30/87(2) Part I 'Qatar: Oil Concession.' [‎68r] (158/1310)

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The record is made up of 4 volumes (639 folios). It was created in 14 Jan 1935-8 Nov 1944. 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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in return for an acceptance by the Sheikh of the point of view
that the suspension of operations was justified.
But the Resident 1 s telegram of the 23rd July is not very
lucid, and I do not; feel altogether happy about expressing
agreement with it, or undertaking to advise the Company,
without having seen the papers to which the telegram refers
or being cleareras to the exact nature of the proposal.
- * ~ 4 -- ed (and perhaps everyone else
— — ^**> 0 ^*. Perhaps it is, and if so I should
feel that nothing much would be given away by accepting the
position. But in the light of the papers below, is it not
possible (l should have thought probable) that what is
contemplated is a written record of agreement in the new form
in place of the formula in paragraph 3 of the draft above
referred to, i.e. a ‘written recognition of the state of
interruption of operations 1 , though not the recognition that
was desired? If this were so, the matter would perhaps require
more consideration. Would it not be in effect something like
an admission that the cessation of work was not covered by
Article 15 of the concession, and that it is now accordingly
[ to be covered by this new agreement? And could we in that case
agree without qualification with the Residents assumption
Would it not be desirable in any case to await the
arrival of the papers referred to, which may make the position
clearer? They should presumably arrive very shortly?
view that what is proposed is an
* k ^ c
that the Company are still protected by Article 15?* Perhaps
there is nothing in this; and it would not seem to matter
much for practical purposes if the Company are satisfied to
rest on the new agreement. But I feel that wg ought to be
clearer on these points before taking the responsibility
of advising them.

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Content

The file concerns the signing of the agreement between the British Government, the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (APOC) (later the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company), and the Shaikh of Qatar, Abdullah bin Qasim al Thani [‘Abdullāh bin Jāsim Āl Thānī] to award the company an exclusive oil concession in Qatar (also spelled Qatr and Katr). The file also concerns preliminary oil explorations in Qatar, and the subsequent suspension of operations on the orders of the British Government.

The papers cover: discussion, drafts and text of the commercial agreement between the Shaikh of Qatar and APOC (signed 17 May 1935); discussion, draft and text of the political agreement between HM Government and APOC (signed 5 June 1935); the use by the Shaikh of modern, Egyptian Arabic to make comments on the draft (folios 624-625); British support for the proposal that disputes between foreign employees of the company and inhabitants of Qatar should not be submitted to the Shara [Sharia] courts (folio 604); intelligence on the activities of the Standard Oil Company [California-Arabia Standard Oil Company] (e.g. folio 443); British emphasis that military protection would be afforded to the Shaikh of Qatar on condition that he awarded the oil concession to APOC, and the assumption by Britain of responsibility for the protection of Qatar (e.g. folios 400-403); the transfer of the concession from the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company to Petroleum Development (Qatar) Limited (e.g. folios 335-357); the payment of salaries to the Shaikh's representatives (e.g. folios 294-295); water drilling operations by the company (e.g. folios 237-241); references to Qatar's disputed border with Saudi Arabia; reports of preliminary drilling results and first discoveries of oil (1939-41); employment of foreign personnel by Petroleum Concessions Limited in Qatar (folios 180-182); the suspension of drilling operations on the orders of HM Government in 1942 as a result of war conditions, including correspondence on the subject between British officials and the Shaikh of Qatar, 1942-43; note that the suspension had been ordered because the British military authorities were unable to spare sufficient personnel to ensure the destruction of the oil wells, should the military situation demand it (folio 41); correspondence dated 1944 concerning a proposed increase in world oil refining capacity; and further correspondence dated 1944 concerning the boundary between Qatar and Bahrain at Hawar Island.

The main correspondents are senior officials at the 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. , representatives of the oil companies concerned, and the Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. in the Persian Gulf Historically used by the British to refer to the sea area between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Often referred to as The Gulf or the Arabian Gulf. .

The Arabic language content of the file consists of approximately 30 folios of correspondence, largely between British officials and the Ruler of Qatar.

The file includes a divider, which gives a list of correspondence references contained in the file by year. This is placed at the back of the correspondence.

Extent and format
4 volumes (639 folios)
Arrangement

The papers are arranged in approximate chronological order from the rear to the front of the file.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: this file consists of four physical volumes. The foliation sequence commences at the inside front cover of volume one (ff 1-161) and terminates at the inside back cover of volume four (ff 486-647); 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. A previous foliation sequence, which is also circled, has been superseded and therefore crossed out.

Written in
English and Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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Coll 30/87(2) Part I 'Qatar: Oil Concession.' [‎68r] (158/1310), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/12/3806A, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100047810664.0x00009f> [accessed 22 November 2019]

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