Algerian state-owned oil company Sonatrach has awarded Italys Eni three permits to carry out exploration work.
The permits cover the onshore basins of Timimoun and Oued Mya, in southern Algeria. The permits are valid for two years and covering 46,837 square kilometres.
Eni will carry out several studies and exploratory drilling of the area. It has not yet committed to whether the area contains commercial reserves of oil or gas.