UK oil & gas firm takes steps to widen its footprint offshore Africa

Panoro has inked a heads-of-terms agreement with GEPetrol, Equatorial Guinea’s national oil company (NOC), and the Ministry of Mines and Hydrocarbons, paving the way for a period of exclusive negotiations to finalize a production sharing contract (PSC) for Block EG-23 and development of a work program and budget.

John Hamilton, CEO of Panoro, commented: “We are grateful to the government of Equatorial Guinea for this opportunity to enter into a PSC for the highly prospective Block EG-23 and further grow our business in Equatorial Guinea. The award of a PSC for Block EG-23, when finalised, will be a complementary expansion of our existing acreage portfolio in Equatorial Guinea.

Located offshore Equatorial Guinea north of Bioko Island and adjacent to the producing Alba gas and condensate field, Block EG-23 covers a surface area of approximately 600 km2 in water depths ranging from 50 to 100 meters. Once a PSC has been awarded, the UK-headquartered player thinks that its participating interest in the block will be up to 80% initially.

According to Panoro, 19 wells have been drilled on the block so far, resulting in seven hydrocarbon discoveries, including four oil, two gas, and one gas/condensate discovery. Some of these have been tested. Previously, Block EG-23 was held by Marathon.

We look forward to partnering with GEPetrol to leverage our collective core subsurface skill sets, increasing our exposure to a broad range of play types, prospects and leads in the vicinity of existing infrastructure,” added Hamilton.

The UK firm’s technical evaluation has indicated a range of plays on the block, identifying several prospects and leads in addition to the existing discoveries. In light of this, Panoro believes that an initial work program will be focused on re-processing existing seismic data to mature prospects and leads to a drill-ready state with an option to enter a second stage, which would entail drilling.

The UK firm has actively worked on expanding its portfolio. To this end, Panoro entered into a definitive agreement with Beender Tunisia Petroleum Limited (Beender) to acquire its shareholding in Sfax Petroleum Corporation (SPC) for a total consideration of approximately $18.2 million in a mix of cash and shares. This acquisition was wrapped up last year.

The company also secured more acreage offshore Equatorial Guinea, following the award of a stake and operatorship in Block EG-01.

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