Finder's licenses off Australia; Source: Finder Energy

With license extension in hand, Australian firm seeks partner to bankroll hydrocarbon exploration ops

Perth-based oil and gas exploration player Finder Energy has secured a license extension offshore Western Australia, enabling it to search for a partner to fund exploration activities, which will test the identified prospectivity in this license.

Finder's licenses off Australia; Source: Finder Energy

The three-year suspension and extension of the primary term related to the Finder Energy-owned WA-547-P, which extends the end date to January 4, 2027, with no additional commitments, allows the firm time to progress environmental approvals, including consultation processes related to the work program.

In addition, it offers increased flexibility on the timing of expenditure on major work program commitments and allows Finder to secure a farm-in partner to fund those commitments. Three large prospects – Brees, Favre, and Brady – with a combined 2U (P50) prospective resource potential of over 500 MMbbl of recoverable oil have been identified within the license.

As this license is located in the prolific Dorado play trend in the Northern Carnarvon Basin offshore Western Australia, the company will benefit from any additional discoveries in the Dorado play, as further success in the area is anticipated to enhance the value of WA-547-P. 

Source: Finder Energy

According to Finder, the Dorado play is one of the most exciting and active exploration plays in Australia, since the Dorado field, situated to the east of WA-547-P, is said to be the largest undeveloped conventional oil resource in Australia. Currently, the operator of Dorado, Santos, is aiming to be ready to take a final investment decision (FID) this year.

Furthermore, Finder anticipates further exploration drilling to come, which in combination with a continuation of the high success rate in this play, is expected to have positive implications for the WA-547-P strategy.

The company highlighted that investor confidence in the sector was badly damaged due to delays and costs caused by litigation funded by activists which impeded activity on high-profile projects such as Santos’ Barossa gas project and Woodside’s Scarborough LNG project.

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As both of those projects have recently overcome those impediments and are now proceeding again, Finder hopes these developments will help restore investment confidence, leading to improved farm-out conditions in Australia.

“Securing additional tenure on WA-547-P in this environment is critical to the success of our farmout strategy. As positive investment sentiment returns to the sector, Finder will ramp up marketing of its high quality Australian farmout opportunities in WA-547-P as well as the Gem prospect in AC/P 61,” explained the company.