Ascent Resources plc has signed a Preliminary Agreement for an 80% participation in the exploration of the East Slovenia Exploration Permit to the north of the Petisovci oil and gas field redevelopment project. In addition, it has acquired a 35% beneficial interest in the Concordat Exploration Project in North Eastern Switzerland.
The East Slovenian Project covers an area of 864 sq. km over three separate blocks within the 2,473 sq. km Pomurje Regional Exploration Area. A number of wells were drilled in this area in the 1950s by INA-Naftaplin of which at least six demonstrated good shows of oil or gas. The current work program envisages a regional exploration study followed by seismic and exploration or appraisal drilling in 2009. Under the terms of the Agreement, Ascent will hold an 80% interest in the Project through its wholly owned subsidiary Nemmoco Slovenia Corporation, which also operates the adjoining Petisovci Redevelopment Project.
In Switzerland, Ascent has acquired a 35% beneficial interest in 7,238 sq. km of the 7,495 sq. km Concordat Exploration Permit. This interest will be assigned to PEOS AG, Ascent’s wholly owned Swiss subsidiary. The work program planned for permit for the remainder of 2008 involves the reprocessing of existing seismic data.
In Spain, the Rocamundo Exploration Application has been superseded by the Biguenzo Exploration Application lodged by a Spanish Exploration Company. Rather than participating in this project and following the disposal of its other Spanish assets in 2007, Ascent has elected to exit Spain completely.
Ascent's Managing Director, Jeremy Eng, commented, "As Ascent’s primary focus is Central and Eastern Europe, particularly Switzerland, Italy, Slovenia and Hungary, we are currently consolidating and strengthening our presence in these regions. With production in Hungary due to commence and the new Perazzoli rig on line to drill its first well (on a third party project) in Italy both in the coming weeks, our operational presence across this region will be further enhanced. The new Anagni seismic acquisition in Italy's Latina Valley is complete and Ascent continues to following its preferred strategy of the development, appraisal and exploration of its portfolio of oil and gas assets.