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Last week both Solo Oil PLC and Aminex plc confirmed an extension to the Mtwara Licence, of the Ruvuma PSA in Tanzania, as the group advances plans to drill an appraisal well on the Ntorya discovery.

In stock market statements the companies’ told investors that the expiry of the Mtwara licence, which had been due in December, had now be extended by a further year. The Ntorya gas condensate discovery is located within Mtwara, and the drilling of the planned Ntorya-2 well will satisfy the partners’ drilling commitments under the licence terms.

Thereafter, assuming operations go to plan, the partners can apply for a 25 year development licence for the Ntorya discovery.

"Solo is very pleased with progress in the Ruvuma PSA and that we will shortly be in a position to commence the appraisal of the Ntorya-1 gas condensate discovery which we remain convinced has substantially more potential than the gross 70 bcf of gas booked to contingent resources this far,” said Neil Ritson, Solo Oil chief executive.

“We look forward to an announcement from Aminex on the expected spud date for the Ntorya-2 well in due course." At the same time, operations continue in order to bring the Kiliwani North gas field up to optimal production levels.

Kiliwani North began producing gas in April, and more recently commissioning work has focussed on pipelines and facilities at the Songo Songo processing plant. The operation is expected to reach production of 30mln cubic feet of gas per day shortly.

Aminex separately noted that its lender had agreed to grant an 18 month extension on the repayment of its corporate loan, until January 2018, on existing terms.

Jay Bhattacherjee, Aminex chief executive, said: "With over a decade of in-country experience and the opportunity to build long lasting relationships with the TPDC and the Tanzanian government, we are grateful for the support we have received in extending and transferring our work obligations.”

Aminex is the operator of both the Ruvuma PSA and Kiliwani North. It has a 75% stake in Ntorya, while Solo has 25%. At Kiliwani North Solo has a 6.175% share in the project.

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