Aim-listed Europa Oil & Gas said today that one of its licences in the Atlantic basins, just off the coast of Ireland, potentially contains between 300m and 600m barrels of oil equivalent.
Europa has a 100 per cent interest in, and is operator of, seven licences in the Atlantic basins offshore Ireland including LO 16/22, which covers 992 square kilometres in the Padraig Basin, where the discovery has been made.
Shares in the group were up over five per cent in early trading.
The group's chief exec, Hugh Mackay, said there is "considerable industry interest" in Flemish Pass analogues being found off the coast of west Ireland following Statoil’s exploration success at the play-opening Bay du Nord oil discovery in the Flemish Pass basin offshore Newfoundland.
"While most of the industry is currently focused on exploring for this play in the South Porcupine basin our restoration of the conjugate margin prior to Atlantic seafloor spreading suggests the possibility that the Padraig basin may be a better fit with the Flemish Pass basin," he added.
“The potential of the Flemish Pass play in Ireland is currently being pioneered in the South Porcupine basin by the oil majors. If they achieve exploration success we expect there will be clear technical read across to, and potentially de-risking of, our Padraig licence and in due course this might encourage a second phase of drilling in the perched basins on the Rockall margin.
"While the Padraig Basin play is currently at an early exploration stage and at the higher risk end of the exploration spectrum, we have a work programme to de-risk this evolving play."
Europa's interests in the Porcupine basin were valued at a total of £1bn last year. The company also has a major interest in the Wressle development in the UK.