Correspondence concerning Application for oil
prospecting licence by the Palestine Mining &
Prospecting Company Ltd.
Dr. D. Ghosh,
United Nations Palestine Commission,
An application for an oil prospecting licence was made to this Government by the Palestine Mining and Prospecting Co. Ltd., but in view of the termination of the Mandate no new oil prospecting licences are being issued. The Solicitors of the Company, Woodbridge and Sons, London, have asked that the application be handed over to the successor administration. I am, therefore, enclosing herewith their application together with all relevant documents.
for CHIEF SECRETARY
5 NEW BRIDGE STREET,
LONDON, E.C. 4.
Palestine Mining & Prospecting Co. Ltd.,
Your reference 0045.
We have received your letter of the 16th February last the contents of which ye note.
We shall be much obliged if you will be good enough to give instructions for our application to be handed over to the Controller of Mines, Department of any new Government which may follow the present Government in Palestine.
Your obedient servants
This application was taken by hand by Mr. Lawson-Lennox to the Government Headquarters Jerusalem end handed over to the Controller of the Mines Department on the 12th December 1947.
A previous application had been made towards the end of the year 1945, but the Mines Department eventually gave us to understand that our maps were inadequate.
On the 5th January 1948, we received a letter from the Controller, in which he stated that your Government were not at present proposing to issue oil prospecting licences to any applicants.
The Palestine Mining and Prospecting Company Ltd., have a capital of L 50,000 and the Board of the Company at present consist of the following gentlemen:-
1. Mr. Sh. Hirenburg, Banker of Tel-Aviv.
2. Mr. S. Kaplan, Commercial Agent of Tel-Aviv.
3. Mr. J.R. Lawson-Lennox of London.
4. Mr. L. Gornitsky, Solicitor of Tel-Aviv.
other British Directors can be added it necessary.
The Company’s Geologist has sufficient capital in Palestine Oil Mining experts and staff; and mining equipment.
The Company’s Geologist in Palestine is Professor Picard, Mr. Beeby Thompson of Mssrs. Beedy Thompson & Partners of London is the technical adviser, and probably the greatest authority on oil in Palestine in England. These gentlemen are satisfied that the areas covered by the application are oil bearing grounds. They also are of the opinion that certain areas possess sufficient “dry gas” to supply the whole of Palestine. At the present time there is no gas in Palestine.
On the 19th January 1948 we approached the Colonial Secretary in this country and placed before him all details of our application in the hope that it would be possible for him to support our application.
We, however, were subsequently informed that the grant of oil prospecting licences was entirely within your discretion.
In these circumstances we hope it will be possible for you to deal with our application and we shall very much appreciate your support and direction.
Your obedient servants,