Although the Rockhopper view of the prospectivity of the Desire acreage has not changed, the Directors have decided to maintain the Company's farm in exposure to the Desire Petroleum operated licenses PL003 and PL004 at its current level of 7.5%.
Over the past few months both the cost and availability of suitable drilling units have deteriorated significantly and the drilling timetable is likely to be delayed as a result.
The Directors feel that, given that the primary purpose of the farm-in was exposure to early drilling, the interest of the shareholders is best served by remaining at 7.5% and applying financial resources to maturing a number of high quality prospects for drilling within the Company's own extensive 100% exploration acreage in the North Falkland Basin. The Company is targeting these 100% prospects to be ready for drilling during 2007, when the availability and cost of drilling units are expected to be more favorable.
The recently announced 2D program which Geophysical Service Incorporated (GSI) will shoot early in 2006 is the first step in this process. A significant 3D program has also been designed and an invitation to tender document issued.
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