Rockhopper Hoppin’

9 Aug

LONDON Aug 9 –

British oil explorer Rockhopper said an oil discovery in the Falkland Islands extended at least 4 kilometres to the west of the original well… The results of this well are at the upper end of expectations for the Sea Lion main fan complex,” said Chief Executive Sam Moody in a statement on Tuesday.

This information is now adding to expectations that the oil find is in sufficiently commercial quanities to open up a new province in the remote British territory. Two of the Rockhopper’s earlier appraisal wells have been successful with the flow rates achieved being viewed as commercially viable, according to the company.

“This a highly encouraging result helping firm up the commercial viability of the discovery and increasing mid-range resource estimates for the field,” said Oriel Securities analyst Richard Rose.

“Although not yet disclosed we believe this result is likely to push recoverable reserves into the range of 200-250 million barrels.”

Rockhopper said it now plans to drill an exploration well 3.3 kilometres to the North West of the intial discovery, well 14/10-2, outside of the Sea Lion Discovery Area.

The costs of oil recovery are likely to be high though, as the location is remote and neighbouring Argentina is hostile to the exploration for oil on their doorstep. An islands based oil industry is also likely to contribute to the islander’s increasing independence, further fuelling Argentina’s animosity.

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