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Irish oil firms strike exploration deals in Jamaica and Nigeria

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'An initial exploration period for the prospect has been extended for 18 months by the Government of Jamaica.' Stock photo

'An initial exploration period for the prospect has been extended for 18 months by the Government of Jamaica.' Stock photo

'An initial exploration period for the prospect has been extended for 18 months by the Government of Jamaica.' Stock photo

Irish stock market listed oil and gas explorer, United Oil and Gas, has taken on Tullow's 80pc stake in the Walton Morant licence in Jamaica.

United Oil & Gas announced yesterday that it had received approval from the Jamaican Government to take forward the Walton Morant Licence on a 100pc operated basis.

An initial exploration period for the prospect has been extended for 18 months by the Government of Jamaica.

This will give United until January 31st 2022 before a "drill-or-drop" decision is required.

United already held the other 20pc stake and there was a nominal fee for taking full control, the company said in a statement.

A portion of the licence has been voluntarily relinquished, leaving a more focussed area of c. 22,400km2 that still incorporates all of the identified prospect sites.

A farm-out process is ongoing, and United said it looked forward to taking full ownership of the process and driving it forward.

Meanwhile, San Leon, another independent oil and gas exploration company focused on Nigeria, is investing $15m (€12.8m) through a loan to support a secure pipeline to extract oil from inland wells at its OML 18 site to the coast by-passing a harder to police swamp area,

San Leon will invest in Energy Link Infrastructure (Malta) Limited ("ELI"), the company which owns the Alternative Crude Oil Evacuation System (ACOES) project being constructed to provide a dedicated oil export route.

The investment comprises a 10pc equity interest in ELI together with a US$15m shareholder loan at a coupon of 14pc per annum over 4 years

San Leon said it believes ACOES will have a significant effect on the operation of OML 18, by cutting downtime and losses associated with the existing export route.

Irish Independent