RAK Petroleum has signed an agreement with Ras Al Khaimah Gas Commission to acquire the remaining interests in and the operatorship of the Saleh field, offshore Ras Al Khaimah.

The Saleh field was discovered by Union Oil Company in 1964, but an appraisal well drilled later by Gulf Oil Company led to the development of the field and the start-up of production in January 1984.

RAK will redevelop the Saleh field in the first half of 2011 by deepening an existing well to the Thamama reservoir, the company said.

As part of the exchange agreement, RAK Petroleum, which already holds a 40% interest in Saleh, must give up one billion shares in RAK Education Company to Rakgas.

Rakgas also has the option to re-enter the project for a 30% stake on payment of 30% of drilling costs for the first well.