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Nicaragua & MKJ Xploration Agreement

Official sources said Wednesday that Nicaragua has closed a contract with the U.S. oil company MKJ Xploration to develop and explore oil and natural gas fields off its Caribbean coast

Official sources said Wednesday that Nicaragua has closed a contract with the U.S. oil company MKJ Xploration to develop and explore oil and natural gas fields off its Caribbean coast.

Under the six-year deal, a subsidiary of the Metairie, Louisiana-based company will be exploring for oil about 60 miles from the shore in Caribbean waters. It will be provided with a 30-year contract to produce oil and natural gas if it finds anything.

President Daniel Ortega's predecessor, Enrique Bolanos, granted the company a 988,000-acre concession, but a court threw out that agreement after provincial leaders said national officials had not considered the impact exploration would have on fishing and tourism.