The Government of Morocco has awarded 75% interest and operatorship of the Lixus offshore licence to Chariot Oil & Gas Holdings.

Located 30km north of Chariot’s existing Moroccan acreage, the Lixus licence contains the Anchois-1 well gas discovery. The Office National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines (ONHYM) holds a 25% carried interest in Lixus. The discovery is estimated to hold 307 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of 2C contingent resources. Chariot sees Anchois as a near-term development opportunity.

Lixus is spread over an area of around 2,390km² and is expected to offer low-risk exploration tie-back potential.The company noted that the well area comprises 116Bcf 2U of deeper potential that is not yet tested.

Chariot has identified satellite prospects adjacent to the discovery with an upside of 527 Bcf of resource potential. The field also hosts an additional five prospects in similar geological settings as that of Anchois, but these prospects lack appropriately conditioned 3D seismic data.

The company is also evaluating leads in the wider licence to identify ‘giant scale’ prospective resources.

"The award of the Lixus licence provides Chariot with a discovered resource base offering a low-cost development opportunity and significant upside."

Chariot Oil & Gas CEO Larry Bottomley said: “The award of the Lixus licence provides Chariot with a discovered resource base offering a low-cost development opportunity and significant upside.

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“The commercial attractiveness of the Lixus licence is further enhanced by its position offshore Morocco, a fast growing energy market with high gas prices and a need for increased supply.

“In addition to the development opportunity, the licence offers very low risk exploration tie-back potential in the same play; and higher risk, transformational lead potential in the sub-nappe.”

Chariot investigated wells adjacent to the Anchois discovery as part of a technical review of thermogenic hydrocarbons in the region. The evaluation of the geology of the surrounding area convinced the company about the potential of the asset, and Chariot hopes to achieve strong returns and significant cash flow from the development of the licence.

Chariot will undertake a technical programme of 3D seismic reprocessing and evaluation. A feasibility study will be taken up immediately to assess the commercial viability of the licence, allowing the company to test development concepts.