Oil and Gas Sector – HELP, Open Acreage Policy, etc.

Places in news: Gulf of Gabes


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Gulf of Gabes

Mains level : Not Much

A Fuel Ship with 750 tons of diesel sinks off the Gulf Of Gabes in Tunisia.

Gulf of Gabes

  • The Gulf of Gabes also known as Lesser Syrtis contrasting with the Greater Syrtis in Libya, is a gulf on Tunisia’s east coast in the Mediterranean Sea, off North Africa.
  • The gulf roughly spans the coast from Sfax to Djerba.
  • At the head of the gulf is the city of Gabès (Ghannouche) where the tides have a large range of up to 2.1 m at spring tides.
  • Both Gabès and Sfax are major ports on the gulf, supporting sponge and tuna fisheries, with Gabès being the economic and administrative centre.
  • It is 60 miles (100 km) long and 60 miles wide and is bounded by the Qarqannah (Kerkena) Islands on the northeast and by Jarbah (Djerba) Island on the southeast.

Regional economy of the gulf

  • Except for the Strait of Gibraltar and the Gulf of Venice, it is the only part of the Mediterranean with a substantial tidal range, causing the uncovering of extensive sandbanks at low water.
  • Sponge and tuna fisheries are located at the main ports of Qābis (Gabès) and Ṣafāqis (Sfax).
  • Oil and natural-gas deposits have been found in the gulf, east of Ṣafāqis.


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