Europa Oil & Gas will have to start looking for another farm-in partner to help it drill its Inishkea offshore prospect in Ireland after an oil major has pulled out from farm-in talks.
Europa has been in talks for over a year to farm-out a portion in its 100% owned Frontier Exploration Licences (FELs) 4/19, 1/17 and 3/13 offshore Ireland.
It said on Thursday it had been in farm-out discussions with a number of parties in relation to its Ireland offshore blocks, "including negotiations with the NW Europe division of a major oil company (the 'Major')."
"The Major has now informed the Company that, as part of a wider strategic review, the Licences are no longer under consideration for farm-in. Discussions with several other parties regarding the farm-out of the Licences are continuing," Europa said.
Europa is prioritizing securing a partner to drill its flagship prospect in Ireland, the Inishkea prospect which lies on FEL 4/19 in the Slyne basin.
Inishkea is located close to the ~1tcf producing Corrib gas field and associated infrastructure.
"The Company, therefore, regards Inishkea as lower risk “infrastructure-led” exploration and has assigned gross unrisked prospective resources of 1.5tcf and an estimated geological chance of success of one in three to the prospect," Europa said.
Site survey "being advanced"
Europa said that in parallel with ongoing farm-out discussions, the site survey process for a drilling location at Inishkea is being advanced.
The Company hopes to obtain permission for the survey to be conducted during summer 2020, which would enable drilling to occur during 2021.
Simon Oddie, Interim Chief Executive Officer and Executive Chairman of Europa, said: “With gross unrisked prospective gas resources of 1.5tcf, a one in three chance of success, a location in a proven hydrocarbon region and lying close to the producing Corrib gas field, Inishkea represents a compelling drill target, one that continues to attract considerable interest from a number of potential partners. While we cannot comment on timings for the conclusion of ongoing discussions, we remain optimistic that we will secure a partner for Inishkea with whom we can drill what has the potential to be a transformational well for Europa.
“In the meantime, activity continues across our asset base including working with our partners to bring the Wressle field in the UK into production later this year at an initial gross rate of 500bopd as well as technical work in Morocco focused on reprocessing and interpreting data to build a prospect inventory. I look forward to providing further updates on our progress as we look to advance our multi-stage portfolio of assets and in the process generate value for our shareholders.”