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Pancontinental could up local investment

10 October 2013, 18:18

Nairobi - Oil and gas explorer, Pancontinental, revealed it could increase its ownership of the L8 joint venture if Apache yielded its stake.

Apache Senior Vice President was quoted earlier this week as saying Apache was withdrawing from the L8 licence.

Barry Rushworth, Chief Executive Officer and Director of Pancontinental, nonetheless professed ignorance of the moves.

He said Apache had not yet given written notification of its withdrawal to the L8 Joint Venture participants under Article 13.1(A) of the L8 Joint Operating Agreement (“JOA”), nor had given written notice of its resignation as Operator under the JOA.

Withdrawal from the JOA requires 60 days’ written notice, and resignation as operator requires 90 days’ notice.

However the Western Australian-based firm expected Apache to give these notices shortly.

The media report of Apache’s withdrawal from L8, its only venture in Sub-Saharan Africa, follows other Apache divestments around the globe, including in the Gulf of Mexico, Canada and Egypt in recent weeks.

The series of withdrawals are consistent with Apache’s announcement in May 2013 that it planned to divest $4 billion in assets by year-end 2013.

“The L8 Joint Venture will discuss the best way forward and determine the new operator of the Licence after it has been formally notified by Apache of its intention to withdraw. Subject to ministerial consent Pancontinental expects to increase its interest in the L8 licence on a pro-rata basis, at no material cost,” Rushworth stated.

He said following the Mbawa 1 gas discovery locally, it was interpreted that there was a major, deeper opportunity to discover oil in strata that had not yet been tested in L8.

“A number of prospects have been mapped out as potential future drilling targets to test this concept. Pancontinental continues to regard Kenya as one of the best and most stable business environments in Sub-Saharan Africa.”

– CAJ News


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