Australia-based 3D Oil has announced a A$27m ($28m) farm-in deal with Malaysia’s Hibiscus Petroleum for an operating stake in the West Seahorse oil field in VIC/P57.

Under the deal, Hibiscus Petroleum will take a 50.1% operating stake in VIC/P57 and acquire 30.9 million new 3D Oil shares, representing a 13% interest, for A$2m.

Hibiscus Petroleum chairman En Zainul Rahim bin Mohd Zain said in a statement; "This deal is exciting because it provides Hibiscus Petroleum a major stake in an oil and gas concession which contains discovered hydrocarbon resources.

"It also presents an excellent opportunity for Hibiscus Petroleum to develop as an E&P operator of a discovered oil field within a mature hydrocarbon province in Australia."

The agreement is subject to clearance from the Australian Securities Exchange, the shareholders of Hibiscus and the Foreign Investment Review Board.

The VIC/P57 permit, located off the coast of Victoria, is spread over 483km2 and covers a diverse area of the Northern Terrace, the Central Deep areas of the offshore Gippsland Basin and the West Seahorse oil field.

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By GlobalData

The Gippsland Basin is the most productive hydrocarbon province in Australia, with initial resource estimates of more than 4 billion barrels of oil and condensate reserves and 9.8 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves.

The funding from Hibiscus will be used to drill up to two appraisal wells in West Seahorse oil field.

The joint venture plans to develop the field through a mobile offshore production unit and a floating, storage and offloading tanker moored to a CALM buoy.

3D Oil chairman Campbell Horsfall commended the partnership and said; "Together with Hibiscus Petroleum, we will move 3D Oil from an explorer to a developer and oil producer. We have created a strong strategic alignment between 3D Oil and Hibiscus Petroleum by granting an interest in our key asset as well as a cornerstone shareholding in our company."