Woodside expands offshore west Africa presence

OREANDA-NEWS. February 22, 2016. Australian independent Woodside Petroleum has acquired a 65pc participating interest in the production-sharing contract (PSC) and associated joint operating agreement in an offshore exploration block in the joint development area between Senegal and Guinea-Bissau in west Africa.

Woodside bought the stake for an undisclosed sum from UK-based private-sector upstream firm Impact Oil and Gas. Impact will keep a 20pc interest in the contract, with the remaining 15pc owned by Enterprise AGC SA, a joint venture between state-controlled entities in Senegal and Guinea-Bissau.

The PSC is in the AGC Profond block, which covers 6,700km? in water depths of 1,400-3,700m. The area is south of where UK-based Cairn Energy made two oil discoveries in 2014. The purchase is subject to Woodside receiving the necessary regulatory approvals.

The latest purchase continues Woodside's strategy of increasing its exploration presence offshore west and north Africa. It has interests in Cameroon, Gabon and Morocco as well as the Canary Islands, which is part of Spain but located near Morocco.

Woodside said when it released its financial results yesterday that it would continue expanding its exploration interests in the eastern Atlantic and off the west coast of sub-Saharan Africa.