Australia-based African oil explorer Pura Vida Energy expects to drill the MZ-1 well in Morocco during April.

The well, which is located within Pura Vida’s offshore Mazagan Permit, will be drilled using the Atwood Achiever Drillship.

The MZ-1 well will target the Ouanoukrim prospect, which has total gross unrisked mean prospective resources of more than 1.4 billion barrels, with a high case of over three billion barrels.

Pura Vida has a 23% stake in the MZ-1 well, worth an estimated $215m.

"We look forward to receiving handover of the Atwood Achiever Drillship to commence our first well offshore Morocco."

Pura Vida Energy managing director Damon Neaves said: "We look forward to receiving handover of the Atwood Achiever Drillship to commence our first well offshore Morocco.

"The MZ-1 well is targeting a series of up to five stacked targets in both the Cretaceous and Jurassic. A discovery will be transformational for Pura Vida."

The prospectivity of the Mazagan permit has three independent trends featuring several prospects and leads mapped on 2D and 3D seismic data.

The drilling inventory of Pura Vida comprises 13 prospects and leads representing prospective resources of 1.5Bbbls (P50) net.

Pura Vida currently has operations offshore Morocco, Gabon and Madagascar, with significant resource potential and a fully funded drilling programme.