Business Irish

Wednesday 26 July 2017

Providence close to starting Irish site production

Oil exploration

Peter Flanagan

Peter Flanagan

PROVIDENCE Resources chief executive Tony O'Reilly Jr yesterday told investors that his company's drilling programme remained on schedule as the oil and gas explorer moved closer to starting production at its sites off the Irish coast.

Speaking at Providence's annual general meeting yesterday, Mr O'Reilly outlined details of his company's multi-year, multi-well drilling programme, which he said represented the largest drilling campaign carried out in the history of the State.

Providence and its partners plan to invest upwards of $500m (€347m) in the campaign, which includes the drilling of up to 10 exploration and development wells across six basins off the coast of Ireland. A semi-submersible rig has already been contracted for drilling in the Celtic Sea Basin and pre-drilling activities are already well under way, with a first spud date of September now expected, Mr O'Reilly said.

"We have a very busy period ahead.

"The company and its partners firmly believe that recent advances in technology, infrastructure and commodity pricing combine to present a unique opportunity to test the commercial potential of a number of these assets (in Ireland and UK)."

Providence reiterated that they expected its partner Exxon to start drilling in the Dunquin field off the southwest coast of Ireland in either May next year or May 2013.

Mr O'Reilly added that his company may look at divesting an asset it has in Nigeria.

"The OML 113 site offshore Nigeria is a world-class asset but commercially there have been issues among our partners that have held up production there."

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