US oil and gas multinational ExxonMobil has acquired approximately seven million net acres offshore Namibia through an agreement with the Namibian government and the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (NAMCOR).

The agreement is for the acquisition of the 1710 and 1810 blocks, as well as farm-in agreements with NAMCOR for the 1711 and 1811A blocks.

These blocks are located in the Namibe basin 215km offshore Namibia, in water depths of up to 4,000m. The company plans to begin exploration activities, including acquisition and analysis of seismic data, in 2019.

ExxonMobil will be the operator of the blocks, holding a 90% interest in blocks 1710 and 1810 and an 85% interest in in blocks 1711 and 1811A. ExxonMobil also plans to assign 5% of its interest in the 1710 and 1810 blocks to a local Namibian company, with NAMCOR holding the remaining interest in all four blocks.

The company also holds a 40% interest in the PEL 82 licence offshore Namibia, which comprises approximately 11,500km2.

Senior vice president of exploration and new ventures at ExxonMobil Mike Cousins said: “These agreements provide ExxonMobil with an opportunity to explore for hydrocarbons using advanced technology in the frontier Namibe basin.

“We will employ our significant upstream experience and technological expertise and work in close collaboration with NAMCOR in exploring these blocks.”