Dragon Oil said that it is likely to miss its production growth target in 2009 due to “operational issues” at several wells, it has been revealed.

The company is also undergoing talks with majority shareholder Emirates National Oil Company (ENOC) about a possible takeover bid.

Dubai-based Dragon said that gross output growth for the full year is likely to be less than the 15% level the company is aiming for annually during 2009-11, as it unveiled a 37% drop in net profit to $105m in the first half of 2009, due to lower oil prices.

“The results today are disappointing in regard to the group’s statement that it will undershoot its production growth target,” Ed Woolfitt, head of trading at Galvan Research, told Reuters.

Dragon’s London-listed shares traded down 3.5% at £3.35 at 07.35 GMT, according to Reuters.

The group said that it was maintaining its three-year target.