Sunday 22 April 2018

United Oil & Gas set for production in Italy in 2019

The results from the test substantially exceeded expectations, the company said. Photo: PA Wire/PA Images
The results from the test substantially exceeded expectations, the company said. Photo: PA Wire/PA Images
Gavin McLoughlin

Gavin McLoughlin

United Oil and Gas is targeting commercial gas production next year after positive results from a flow test in Italy.

Chief executive Brian Larkin said the company will begin discussions with the Italian authorities to get its exploration licence converted into a production licence.

The results from the test substantially exceeded expectations, the company said.

Moving into production will give the company a solid platform on which to progress the rest of its portfolio.

It is continuing to evaluate acquisition opportunities, ranging from exploration to development and production and will "invariably" look to raise money from the market at some stage, Larkin told the Sunday Independent. Potential purchases are located in Europe, Africa and Latin America.

The company's strategy is to build a low-risk portfolio in Europe with the potential for near-term value creation, combined with more long-term prospects in Africa and Latin America.

"It's probably too early to say when we'll go back to the market but we're opportunity-driven and I guess at the appropriate time we'll look at going back to market," said Larkin.

"We're looking at quite a number of other opportunities - each opportunity that we look at we evaluate as a stand-alone.

"Some of those are a good fit for debt and some of them will be a better fit for equity, and I guess as we look to add to the portfolio and grow the business we will have to assess our financing needs," he added.

The company has partnered up with Tullow Oil on a prospect in Jamaica and is hoping to acquire 3D seismic data on the project shortly, starting in the second quarter.

Larkin said the company would potentially be interested in acquiring assets in the Irish offshore area but that this was beyond the company's "bandwidth" at the moment. He previously worked on projects in the region during his time at Providence Resources.

He also said the company would potentially be interested in establishing an Irish listing in future but that there are no plans for this at the moment.

Sunday Indo Business

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