Bowleven applies to begin Cameroon gas production

Bowleven chief executive Kevin Hart
Bowleven chief executive Kevin Hart
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BOWLEVEN, the Edinburgh-based oil explorer, today moved a step closer to extracting gas from a field off the coast of Cameroon.

The Aim-quoted company has formally applied to the

West African state’s government for permission to start extracing gas.

Bowleven said it will make an investment decision in the second half of next year, with the first gas from the MLHP-7 block on the Etinde permit expected to be produced in 2016. French oil giants Elf, Mobil and Total drilled wells off Cameroon between the 1960s and 1980s, with Bowleven sinking its first exploration wells off the African coast in 2004.

News of the application comes just weeks after the Scots firm signed a $500 million (£313m) deal with FTSE 100 energy services firm Petrofac to develop the gas field.

Under the deal, Petrofac will provide Bowleven with the funding for the initial stage of the development work.