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Spanish join bid to find gas off Irish coast

By: 
Sunday Express Business Reporter

SPANISH oil giant Repsol is joining forces with American leviathan Exxon Mobil, Italy’s Eni and Irish oil minnow Providence Resources to drill a promising well off the west coast of Ireland. 

It is buying into the Providence Resources well Dunquin lying 120 miles offshore that could contain 8.3 trillion cubic feet of gas as well as oil.

The Spanish firm is picking up some of the equity in the well currently held by America’s Exxon Mobil and Eni.

It is thought the deal will give Repsol about 25 per cent of the prospect.

Providence, 20 per cent owned by the O’Reilly family and listed in Dublin and London, is about to embark on an ambitious drilling programme. It plans to drill up to 10 wells on six sites by 2013.

The first test for the explorer will come in October when it re-enters Barryroe, a Seventies’ oil discovery in the Celtic Sea off the south-east coast.

Providence will explore in the Celtic Sea, Dublin, Northern Ireland and in deep water off Ireland’s west coast.

Improved infrastructure, high oil prices and enhanced technology will allow Providence to look again at prospects previously regarded as not commercially viable.

Posted Date: 
18 September 2011