Total, Anadarko Petroleum and Canadian Natural Resources are set to drill exploration wells in Ivory Coast, on three offshore blocks with an investment up to $300m.

All three concessions, which are planned for drilling in 2014, are said to be ultra-deepwater blocks.

West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea has witnessed a rise in oil and gas exploration since Ghana discovered its Jubilee field and brought it on stream in late 2010.

The French oil and gas company Total had found oil on its CI-100 block in the eastern waters of Ivory Coast, which is adjacent to the maritime boundary with Ghana in April.

Total Cote d’Ivoire managing director Nicolas Payer told Reuters the new wells are planned for drilling on its blocks, which are located close to the western border of Ivory Coast.

"2014 will be a phase of intensified exploration in Ivory Coast," Payer added.

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By GlobalData

Close to the town of Sassandra, Total plans to drill three wells on blocks 514, 515 and 516, for which the investment will be financed by the consortium.

Total holds 54% interest in CI-514 block, Canadian Natural Resources owns 36% and the remaining ten percent will be controlled by Ivorian state oil company Petroci.

In the other two blocks 515 and 516, Total and Anadarko each own 45%, while Petroci holds ten percent.

Total’s businesses cover the entire oil and gas chain, from crude oil and natural gas exploration and production to power generation, transportation, refining, petroleum product marketing and international crude oil and product trading.

Image: Total building in la Défense near Paris, France. Photo courtesy of Tangopaso.