BP, Eni to start exploratory drilling in Libya in first quarter of 2019

BP (Photograph: Luke Macgregor/Reuters)

British Petroleum and its Italian partner Eni are expected to start exploratory drilling in Libya early in the first quarter of 2019, according to the chairman of the country’s National Oil Company Mustafa Sanallah.

“The first well will be drilled at the beginning of the first quarter,” Mustafa Sanallah told the Telegraph.

“I’m optimistic. The Italians are courageous and have experience on the ground, but the return of BP is the most important thing.

“It sends a strong signal to other international oil companies that the Libyan market is promising.” He added, according to The Telegraph.

The UK-listed oil company’s return to Libya comes seven years after its exploration programme was interrupted in 2011.

BP’s comeback was preceded by a deal to sell 42.5pc of its 85pc stake in an exploration license that covers three areas — two onshore sites in the Ghadames basin and one offshore area in the Sirt basin — to Eni.

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