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Falklands’ Desire given the green light to drill second well in Rachel prospect

Tuesday, November 9th 2010 - 15:09 UTC
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The Ocean Guardian oil rig is waiting for weather conditions to improve to spud the second Rachel prospect well The Ocean Guardian oil rig is waiting for weather conditions to improve to spud the second Rachel prospect well

Falkland Islands Desire Petroleum confirmed Tuesday it had secured regulatory and partner approvals to drill a second well 14/15-2 well in the North Falkland basin Rachel prospect.

The 14/15-1 Rachel well had to be prematurely abandoned following mechanical problems which meant it was unable to carry out the necessary tests to establish how successful the well could have been. But Desire was sufficiently encouraged to consider a second drill in more or less the same place.

The Rachel North well will be drilled vertically with an estimated total depth of 3,050 meters. The bottom hole location will be 1.7km from the Rachel sidetrack 14/15-1Z bottom hole location. Drilling operations are expected to last around 35 days.

Desire said it was intended that this well would evaluate the sands with oil shows encountered in the Rachel sidetrack as well as a number of possible additional sands not seen in the sidetrack.

The company thanked the regulatory authorities and its partner Rockhopper Exploration (LON:RKH) for their speedy approvals to move to the new Rachel North location.

Desire is one of a handful of exploration companies currently drilling for oil in the Falklands using the Ocean Guardian rig. In anticipation of the latest well, shares in the AIM listed company jumped from 95p at the start of September to a high of 168p in early October. They closed Monday at 119.75p.

The value of shares in its partner Rockhopper Exploration has soared since the end of May when it became the first of the group to strike oil with a discovery at the Sea Lion prospect. Rockhopper holds a 7.5% working interest in the Rachel well.

Financial Tags: DES, RKH.

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