Azonto Petroleum shares rise as Gazelle gets presidential sign off
(ASX:APY LON:AZO) shares gained a third after its part owned affiliate Vioco has been granted an Exclusive Exploitation Authorisation (EEA) for the Gazelle gas field offshore Cote d'Ivoire.
The EEA award was signed by the President of Cote d'Ivoire.
It comes after a field development plan was approved at the end of October and it is anticipated that Vioco will reach a project sanction decision in the first half of 2015.
First gas could then follow 14 to 16 months later in the second half of 2016.
"Overall progress on Gazelle has been much slower than originally anticipated but award of the EEA by the President is visible confirmation of continued support for the project from the highest level" said chief executive Rob Shepherd.
As we indicate in our corporate presentation and as also highlighted in external research available on our website
He added: "the value of Azonto's interest in Gazelle is significantly in excess of our current market capitalisation.
"The reality is that whilst the development of Gazelle has faced additional execution challenges primarily due to the need to fully align the upstream and midstream phases the economics remain fully robust even though the price of oil has fallen significantly in recent months.
"We look forward therefore to working with Vioco towards project sanction and unlocking full value for shareholders."
Azonto owns a 35% stake in Vioco alongside Vitol which has the other 65%.
On Azonto shares gained 17% to trade at 0.35p.
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