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Fastnet narrows loss, crucial year ahead

Monday, August 18 11:14:42

Irish prospector, Fastnet Oil and Gas, today posted an operating loss of $2.9m for the year to the end of March, down from $3.5m a year before as it faces in to a "transformational year".

It said this reflected the low operating costs incurred when using external consultants and advisors for specific value adding projects only.

The company reported a strong balance sheet with $17.4m cash reserves at the end of March and almost $20m at the end of July after the completion of the Foum Assake farm-out deal to SK Innovation.

It is fully funded to meet all current licencing phase commitments and obligations, the company added in its results statement today.

Fastnet Chairman, Cathal Friel, said the firm's continuing strategy is to build a portfolio of high impact exploration and appraisal assets and de-risk these assets by seeking farm-in partners for a carry while retaining material interests in the licences.

"In accordance with our strategy we expect to secure farm-in partners in both the Celtic Sea and onshore Morocco this calendar year, despite the difficult climate at present for the oil and gas exploration sector. Fastnet has established a farm-out track record with the farm-out of the Foum Assaka licence and has proven that we can manage risk and maintain healthy cash balances. Following the conclusion of a successful farm-out process we will be looking to prove commercial rates can be produced from the Tendrara TE-5 gas structure and given the size of the asset the year ahead has the potential to be transformational for Fastnet."

It has a total of 25,192km squared under licence with primary drilling and appraisal prospects matured for drilling.

For more visit: www.businessworld.ie