Sterling Energy Plc, the AIM listed independent oil & gas exploration and production company has provided an update on activities in its Ambilobe and Ampasindava Blocks, located offshore Madagascar.
A 1,363 km 2D seismic programme is currently in progress on the Ampasindava Block. The programme is designed to provide improved control over the large Sifaka prospect as well as to mature additional prospects in the Ampasindava Block to drill-ready status. Sterling holds a 30% interest in the Ampasindava PSC which is operated by ExxonMobil Exploration and Production (Northern Madagascar) Limited.
Discussions with the seismic contractor on extending the 2D acquisition programme into the Ambilobe Block are in progress. Sterling’s plan is to acquire 850 km of 2D data to mature currently identified leads into prospects. Sterling is also planning for a follow-on programme in the Ambilobe Block to acquire 1,250 km² of 3D seismic data, designed to identify a drilling location. Under the terms of the recently announced farmout agreement with Pura Vida Mauritius (“Pura Vida”), all costs associated with the acquisition of both the 2D and 3D seismic programmes in the Ambilobe Block, up to a maximum cost of US$15 million, are carried by Pura Vida. Further to the recently announced farmout to Pura Vida, which awaits approval by the Government of Madagascar, Sterling will on completion hold a 50% interest in, and will remain the operator of, the Ambilobe PSC.
Presidential approval was granted in July 2013 to extend the current phase of both the Ampasindava and Ambilobe PSCs to September 2015. These approvals have now been formally published in the Official Gazette of Madagascar.
Sterling Energy Plc.’s Executive Chairman, Alastair Beardsall, said:
“We are pleased to see the resumption of exploration activity on both the Ambilobe and Ampasindava Blocks. The new seismic programmes will further our understanding of the sub-surface potential of these two very large, undrilled exploration areas.’’