Chariot Oil & Gas Limited (LON:COPL) has expanded its interests offshore Morocco, snapping up an area close to upcoming drilling activity.
The AIM quoted explorer already owns a 10% stake in the Rabat Deep project, where partner ENI plans to drill an exploration well in 2018.
Preparing for the chance to follow up any success at Rabat Deep the company has now secured a 75% interest of a new adjoining area, which was previously part of the Rabat Deep project.
It was awarded the interest in the Kenitra Offshore Exploration Permit by Morocco’s Office National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines (ONHYM) which retains the other 25% of the project.
The untested Kenitra area also lies next to the Mohammedia Offshore Exploration Permits I-III, also 75% owned by Chariot, where seismic data gathered in 2014 shows exploration targets in shallow water (with resource potential up to 350mln barrels) as well as deeper prospects.
A new 3D seismic programme specifically assessing the Kenitra and Mohammedia areas is now planned, and will satisfy the minimum work commitments for the respective permits.
“This award allows us to capture the extension of the Lower Cretaceous play which spreads from Mohammedia into the Kenitra acreage,” said chief executive Larry Bottomley.
“With our focus on de-risking our assets, Chariot will develop the drilling inventory on these permits through seismic acquisition which capitalises on the current excellent seismic contract rates.
He added: “The RD-1 well scheduled to be drilled in early 2018 on Rabat Deep has the potential to further de-risk the hydrocarbon charge system in the Cretaceous play in Kenitra and Mohammedia which has prospectivity in excess of a billion barrels in which the Company holds 75% equity.”