The Cuban authorities have said that they are ready to launch commercial oil drilling in the "Exclusive Economic Zone" exploration field in the Gulf of Mexico.
"Cuba is ready to start drilling oil wells at deep sea," Rolando Fernandez, an official of the state oil-company, said Tuesday.
The Cuban government has also set up a "national contingency plan to deal with possible oil spills" to avoid any harm to the environment, Fernandez said.
Fernandez, author of the book "Offshore oil well drilling" on the prospects of oil drilling in Cuba, said "The field exploration at sea requires a high level of quality and safety to prevent harm to humans and environment."
Cuba produced 4 million tons of oil and gas in 2011, according to official figures. But this only meets half of the domestic demand while the rest is imported from Venezuela.
Cuban leader Raul Castro has expressed high hope that with the deep sea exploration of the blocks in the economic zone, Cuba will be able to realize energy self-sufficiency.