THE military has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Exxon Mobil Exploration and Production Philippines (Emepp) for the security and protection of the company’s oil exploration in Sulu Sea.

Lieutenant General Benjamin Mohammad Dolorfino, Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom) chief, said the MOU signing took place Thursday at Camp Basilio Navarro, which houses the Wesmincom headquarters in Zamboanga City.

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Aside from Dolorfino, the MOU was also signed by Rear Admiral Alexander Pama, Naval Forces Western Mindanao (NFWM) chief, as one of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) representatives and Emepp, as well as by Operations Office Scott Spradlin on behalf of the exploration firm.

Emepp, a big international company, is an oil and gas exploration and production contractor of the Republic of the Philippines under Service Contract (SC) 56.

It is presently undertaking in the drilling exploration in the Southern Sulu Sea and will install oil or gas producing structures if the drilling exploration will be successful.

Dolorfino encouraged all parties to adhere to their respective obligations and responsibilities as stipulated in the MOU.

Pama, who has the jurisdiction on the project site, said the AFP has the capability of providing security.

He said the Emepp will provide logistical requirements for the Navy vessels and aircraft that will be patrolling in the area as stipulated in the MOU.

Spradlin, for his part, said the project cost hundreds of million dollars.