The Moroccan government has invested more than 56 million euros in oil prospecting this year through contracts signed with several forei g n companies, the Ministry of Energy and Mines said on Friday.
It added that it signed six contracts for reconnaissance and nine oil prospectin g agreements.
These foreign companies plan to drill seven wells by the end of 2009 in differen t basins.
According to the ministry, calls for tenders have also been launched for the tra nsfer of five mining sites of the National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines (NOH M ).
Morocco imports almost all its total energy needs, notably from countries of the Gulf at more than US$2.5 billion per year.
In the first quarter of 2008, Morocco crude oil imports amounted to 740 million euros, up 68.9 per cent compared to the same period in 2007.
Last May, Saudi Arabia granted 500 million dollars aid to Morocco to ease its oi l bill.
The money has been put into a “Special Fund” established by King Mohammed VI.