Israel-Lebanon border
Israel-Lebanon border Hadas Parush/Flash90

Lebanon's President Michel Aoun said on Tuesday that France-based oil and gas company, TotalEnergies, could help his country solve maritime demarcation issues with Israel, Reuters reported, citing a post from the presidency office on Twitter.

Aoun would make "contacts to help in this regard, will increase communications this month", the office added.

Lebanon and Israel are currently holding US-mediated negotiations to delineate a shared maritime border.

There have been major natural gas discoveries off the coasts of both countries during the last decade, and the border dispute has halted gas exploration in an area that has attracted the interest of US energy companies.

The talks were initiated after Lebanon signed its first contract to drill for oil and gas off its coast with a consortium comprising energy giants Total, ENI and Novatek, including in a block disputed by Israel.

Amos Hochstein, the US diplomat mediating the talks, will be in Beirut at the end of the week to follow up on discussions with the Lebanese side.

Hochstein was last in Beirut in late July for meetings with Lebanese officials.

At the time, a senior Israeli official told Reuters that Hochstein would present a new Israeli proposal that "includes a solution that would allow the Lebanese to develop the gas reserves in the disputed area while preserving Israel's commercial rights".

After his visit, Hochstein said he remained optimistic about making progress towards a deal.