One Nine Investment International (One Nine)- a wholly owned subsidiary of the Gaddafi International Charitable Foundation - has acquired a strategic stake in Ireland's Bula Resources. One Nine has taken 50 million shares in the company giving it an estimated 2 per cent interest. A further 25 million shares have been placed with a Maltese holding company, which is also Libyan owned. 'The question of representation is still an issue to be clarified,' says a source close to the deal.
Bula has raised an estimated Eur 1.4 million ($1.3 million) from the sale, which it plans to invest in local exploration activities. The Dublin-based company has an exploration and production-sharing agreement (EPSA) in place with the National Oil Corporationfor blocks S-07, located in the western Sirte basin, and G-03, located near the junction of the Tunisian and Algerian borders.
The EPSA, signed in October 1997, is awaiting final ratification from the government, which is contingent on Bula finding a strategic foreign partner. Its previous partner, Canadian Occidental Petroleum - now Nexen - haswithdrawn from the agreement. The EPSA requires an estimated $30 million initial investment in the two blocks (MEED 24:9:99).
Elsewhere in Libya, Bula is pursuing exploration opportunities in the Chadar field, covering an area of 470 square kilometres in the Sirte basin. Initial appraisal drilling has indicated significant oil, gas and condensate reserves in Chadar. The company, which is active in Iraq, is also working on prospects in blocks S-23 in the Sirte basin, C-05, C-06 and C-07 in the Cyrenaica basin, and M-05, M-06 and M-12 in the Murzuq basin.
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