Desire halves losses as it puts faith in Falklands exploration

DESIRE Petroleum announced yesterday that it had halved its losses and said it would press on with its oil exploration in the Falklands.

The group’s 2011 losses were $42.5m (£26.5m), compared with $113.9m the year before. Desire said it would not be drilling new wells but moving ahead with current operations in the region, which has been in the spotlight with escalating tension between the UK and Argentina.

Desire chairman Stephen Phipps said: “The Sea Lion discovery plus the associated discoveries in the farm-out well reaffirm our belief that there will be further successes in the North Falkland Basin and that a significant oil and gas province is emerging.”

Its Aim-listed peer in the Falklands, Borders & Southern, yesterday said its losses had risen to $1.7m last year.