Monday 23 April 2018

Clontarf and Petrel to re-apply for exploration licence after legal battle with Ghana government

John Teeling, chairman of Petrel Resources
John Teeling, chairman of Petrel Resources

Paul O'Donoghue

Irish energy prospectors, Petrel Resources and Clontarf Energy, are to re-apply for an exploration licence in Ghana after a legal battle with local authorities.

The row started after the the government allegedly went back on a decision to grant the Irish companies a licence for the offshore Tano block.

Clontarf, which owns 60pc of the venture, and Petrel, which owns 30pc, believed they had reached an agreement that would lead to the award of a licence four years ago.

The companies spent around $2m assessing on preparatory work on the project.

However, the Ghanaian government granted rival US company Camac a licence that overlapped with territory that Clontarf and Petrel thought was theirs. This led to the two companies to issue legal proceedings against the government.

The companies, both founded by serial entrepreneur John Teeling, announced that they had reached an agreement with the authorities last October which would allow the companies to keep the same sized acreage as the initial bloc, just in a different area.

However, the two firms have now announced that they are to re-apply for a completely new exploration licence over 1,500 plus sq km of acreage in the Tano Basin through their local subsidiary, Pan Andean.

In identical statements this morning the companies said: “This agreement follows protracted discussions on how best to implement the terms of a court approved settlement relating to a signed 2010 Petroleum Agreement which had not been approved by the Ghanaian cabinet or parliament.  Revised co-ordinates over the area were agreed by the parties concerned in October 2014.

 “The Ghanaian Ministry of Energy has now invited Pan Andean to submit a fresh application over the agreed co-ordinates.  Pan Andean has been given assurances that this fresh application will be expeditiously processed through the approvals process.  Following legal advice Pan Andean is proceeding in accordance with these assurances to submit a fresh application.”

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