Kenyan Petroleum Ministry says the East African country will clear a Qataris oil firm to acquire offshore blocks in the presumably oil-rich Lamu Basin.
In July, state-owned Qatar Petroleum acquired stake in three offshore blocks (L11A, L11B and L12) after closing a deal with Eni and Total, joining the list of multinationals seeking to explore the prospective Indian Ocean seabed.
“Yes the approvals will be given,” Andrew Kamau, the Petroleum Principle Secretary was quoted as saying by Business Daily.
According to the deal, the joint venture will consist of affiliates of each of Eni (the operator) with a 41.25% participating interest, Total with a 33.75% participating interest, and Qatar Petroleum with a 25% participating interest.
Prior to the agreement Eni and Total held 55% and 45% interest respectively, in the blocks which are situated in largely unexplored area in the Lamu basin. They have a total area of approximately 15,000 square kilometres, with water depths ranging from about 1,000 metres to 3,000 metres.
“We are pleased to sign this agreement to participate in exploring these frontier offshore areas in Kenya and to further strengthen our presence in Africa,” said Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs Saad bin Sherida al-Kaabi, who is also the chief executive of Qatar Petroleum in a statement.