Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Petroleum Agency South Africa Signs Offshore Permit

BHP Billiton awarded exploration rights offshore of South Africa's West Coast

According to Petroleum Agency SA CEO Mthozami Xiphu, left, the agency has issued a permit to BHP Billiton. BHP Billiton, PetroSA and Sasol have signed a new-order exploration rights agreement in respect of block 3A/4A, offshore of South Africa. The signature marked the conversion of subleases to exploration rights. BHP Billiton, which has a 60% interest in block 3A/4A and a 90% interest in block 3B/4B, is the operator of both blocks. The remaining equity on block 3A/4A is held by PetroSA (30%) and Sasol (10%).

Global Offshore Oil Exploration South Africa holds a 10% interest in block 3B/4B. Block 3A/4A is considered a shallow water block and block 3B/4B a deep water block. Both blocks are located northwest of Cape Town, off the western coast of South Africa. While the corner of block 3A/4A touches the coast, the area of primary interest is located 274 km offshore. Block 3B/4B is located to the west of block 3A/4A and the area of primary interest currently identified on this block is 379 km offshore. (Mining Weekly, 9/21/2010)