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West Africa-focused oil and gas firm Azonto Petroleum has applied to further extend the exploration period for the Accra Block, offshore Ghana.

The Accra Block covers an area of 2,000km² with water depths varying between less than 50m and more than 2,500m.

"The Accra Block covers an area of 2,000km² with water depths varying between less than 50m and more than 2,500m."

The block features various large exploration prospects, in both the shallow water syn-rift Albian play and also in the deepwater Cenomanian / Turonian turbiditic and hinge-line plays.

Exploration commitments for the existing phase have already been finished, after the drilling of the unsuccessful Starfish-1 well and, in March this year, a six-month extension was granted to enable further analysis.

A data room was subsequently opened to bring a new partner into the existing exploration consortium.

Several potential partners have already decided not to participate in the project and negotiations continue with others; however, the prior extension has now concluded.

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By GlobalData

Azonto said partnering negotiations are ongoing and a further extension is sought from the Minister of Energy in Ghana.

Azonto managing director Rob Shepherd said: "The work our geoscience team has carried out since assuming effective operatorship of the Block in March 2014 has been of extremely high-quality and has been recognised as such by the third parties that have reviewed it to-date.

"The reality is that the time period allocated to complete a farm-out process was insufficiently short and so we have asked the government for a further extension.

"Assuming it is forthcoming, we remain confident that we can obtain a risk and reward exposure to this exciting high-impact asset that reflects the size and strategy of the company."