EDINBURGH, UK – Cairn Energy has an agreement to farm into 35% of an exploration block offshore Mauritania from operator Chariot Oil & Gas Investments (Mauritania).
The C19 block extends over 12,175 sq km (4,701 sq mi) in water depths ranging from shallow shelf to more than 2,000 m (6,562 ft). It is north of existing discoveries in Mauritania and contains the Tertiary and Cretaceous deepwater fan plays proven further south along the West African margin.
Two wells drilled in shallow water areas of the block both penetrated reservoirs with oil shows, suggesting oil migration potential from the south.
The most prospective part of the block, according to Cairn, is covered by a recently acquired 3,500-sq km (1,351-sq mi) 3D seismic survey currently undergoing processing. The aim is to identify a strong drillable prospect by the end of 1Q 2014.
Subject to approval by Mauritania’s government, Cairn will pay Chariot $26 million for seismic and other back costs, after which exploration costs will be borne 38.89% by Cairn and 61.11% by Chariot.
Cairn has the option to apply for operatorship of the block by acquiring a further interest.