Gambia’s A1 offshore block is back on the market for licensing. The petroleum ministry said on Thursday, three days after BP agreed to a $29.3 million settlement for failing to meet its drilling obligations in the West African country.
The British oil major violated its license agreement by failing to drill a well before the initial exploration period expired on July 29. Still, Tuesday’s settlement fulfilled its outstanding obligations, the petroleum ministry said in a statement.
Contacted by Reuters on Friday, BP had no immediate comment. “The A1 Block will revert to government free of all encumbrances,” the statement said. “With BP’s exit, the A1 Block will now be on the market for licensing.”
BP was awarded the block’s exploration rights in 2019 after Gambian authorities stripped the concession from its previous holder for failing to meet certain obligations before the exploration period expired.