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Sea Lion to tap UK Export Finance, contractors

Written by  OE Staff Thursday, 07 September 2017 03:12

Falklands-focused explorer Rockhopper Exploration says a funding package for the Sea Lion development is progressing, with the UK's export credit agency and contractors potentially set to step in with cash. 

Rockhopper says the Premier Oil-led development partners are in discussions with UK Export Finance, the UK’s export credit agency, over a proposed US$800 million loan to fund the Sea Lion project. It says there are also discussions with potential project contractors for a total $400 million in finance. 

Project sanction is still targeted for 2018. 

A Sea Lion Phase 1 development, using a floating production system, has already been reduced to an estimated capex to first oil of $1.5 billion, down from $1.8 billion. Life of field costs are down to US$35/bbl. 

Rockhopper CEO Sam Moody says: "The primary focus for the remainder of 2017 will be to further progress funding proposals with the aim of being in a position to sanction the project during 2018."

Sea Lion is 200km north of the Falkland Islands, and sits in 450m water depth, on the eastern edge of the North Falkland Basin.

In the Phase 1 development, field peak production is expected to reach about 75,000 b/d.  

SBM Offshore will provide the FEED for a floating production storage and offloading vessel, with work anticipated to take 15-18 months to complete, it was reported in June this year.

Project sanction is still targeted for 2018. 

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