Cairn Secures Debt Facility to Fund Catcher, Kraken Projects

UK independent Cairn Energy confirmed Thursday that it has agreed a seven-year debt facility of $575 million with BNP Paribas that will be used to fund part of the firm’s Catcher and Kraken development projects in the North Sea.

Cairn said that by the end of 2017 it expects to have spent approximately $1 billion on its development assets, using both existing cash resources and debt.

Cairn Chief Executive Simon Thomson commented in a company statement:

"Cairn has reached a key milestone for the Kraken and Catcher fields in the North Sea.
"BNP Paribas has agreed to fully underwrite a debt facility to part fund the development of the North Sea assets. The cash flow from these fields will underpin delivery of future exploration programs with appropriate capital allocation within a balanced portfolio."

Cairn said that the Catcher field development plan has received board approvals from all the joint venture partners and Department of Energy and Climate Change approval is expected shortly. The Kraken development is progressing "on schedule" with first oil expected during the second half of 2016 or early 2017.

Meanwhile, Cairn is currently drilling the first of two exploration wells offshore Senegal, where it has a 40-percent working interest. One exploration well is scheduled to be drilled on the Cap Boujdour Contract Area in the fourth quarter of 2014 with Kosmos Energy as operator. Two other non-operated wells, Aragon and West of Kraken in the North Sea, are scheduled in 2014 with a further North Sea well (Tulla) planned for 2015.

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