Gulfsands Petroleum plc, the oil and gas production, exploration and development company with activities in Syria, Tunisia and the U.S.A., announces that the Company has reached an agreement to acquire additional participating interest positions in two exploration permits in Tunisia (Chorbane and Kerkouane Permits) and one exploration permit in Southern Italy (Pantellaria or G.R15.PU) from ADX Energy Limited (“ADX”), XState Resources Limited (“XState”) and Verus Investments Limited (“Verus”).
The total consideration for these transactions will result in the payment of US$1.1 million by way of purchase price and subject to final adjustment, reimbursement of approximately US$415,000 in past costs.
In addition, Gulfsands has agreed with ADX to fund up to US$600,000 of the ADX share of a US$2 million seismic programme to be carried out on the Chorbane permit.
Following completion of these transactions which remain subject to various regulatory approvals expected to be received in the coming months, Gulfsands will hold a 70% participating interest and be Operator of the Chorbane joint venture (onshore Tunisia) and will hold a 40% participating interest in the Kerkouane and Pantellaria joint ventures (offshore Tunisia and Italy). ADX will retain 30% and 60% participating interests in the onshore and offshore joint ventures respectively.
Chorbane Permit – Onshore Tunisia
The Chorbane permit is located onshore central Tunisia near the port city of Sfax. The permit is surrounded by several producing oil fields and extensive oil and gas infrastructure.
As Operator, Gulfsands intends to commence a seismic programme on the Chorbane permit in the New Year, which is currently estimated to cost approximately US$2 million.
Following processing and evaluation of the seismic data captured in the upcoming work programme, Gulfsands is anticipating to drill at least one well on the Chorbane permit during calendar year 2014.
Kerkouane Permit – Offshore Tunisia
G.R15.PU Permit (Pantelleria Permit) – Offshore Italy
G.R15.PU, is located offshore the island of Pantelleria southwest of Sicily in Italian waters and the contiguous Kerkouane Permit is located offshore northeast.
Gulfsands is undertaking a re-evaluation of existing 2D and 3D seismic data acquired within the permit in preparation for a joint venture decision to proceed with the drilling of the commitment well prior to February 2014.
Rift Basin Resources – Strategic Alliance
Gulfsands also announces it has established a strategic alliance with Rift Basin Resources (“Rift Basin”). The intention of the alliance is to facilitate the pursuit and acquisition of petroleum projects in Tunisia and elsewhere in the Middle East and North Africa. Gulfsands will take a 70% participating interest and act as the Operator of any Project acquired under the strategic alliance with Rift Basin taking a 30% interest.
Gulfsands expects the strategic alliance to provide the opportunity for participation in a number of new business opportunities in Tunisia and nearby countries.
Commenting on this announcement, Ric Malcolm, Gulfsands CEO, said:
“We are pleased to have been able to increase our participating interests in these Tunisian permits and to assume operatorship of the Chorbane joint venture. We are planning for a significant increase in exploration activity during 2013 in order to advance preparations for the drilling of exploration wells on both the onshore and offshore permits during early 2014.”
Press Release, November 23, 2012; Image: gulfsands