Saouaf Licence update

This announcement is not an offer for sale, or a solicitation of an offer to acquire, securities in any jurisdiction, including in or into the United States, Canada, Australia, or Japan. Neither this announcement nor any part of it shall form the basis of or be relied on in connection with or act as an inducement to enter into any contract or commitment whatsoever.

Upland Resources Limited (LSE:UPL), the oil and gas company actively building a portfolio of attractive upstream assets, is pleased to announce that the award of an exclusive licence for hydrocarbon exploration and appraisal onshore northern Tunisia to Upland (Saouaf) Limited (“Upland Saouaf“), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company, has been approved by the Hydrocarbon Consultative Committee (the “HCC“) of the Government of Tunisia.


The exclusive licence for exploration and appraisal of conventional oil & gas resources covers 4,004km2 of attractive open acreage comprising the Saouf Permit area (the “Saouaf Licence“) and the Tunisian Government’s Direction Generale des Hydrocarbures (“DGH“) has confirmed the award by the HCC of the Saouaf Licence in the joint names of Upland Saouaf and the Tunisian state oil company, Entreprise Tunisienne d’Activités Pétrolières (“ETAP“).
As indicated by Upland’s technical work on the area, the Company believes there is the potential for very substantial quantities of recoverable gas from conventional targets within the Licence area. The Saouaf Licence includes the existing Dekrila gas discovery, made in the 1950s when there was not a viable local gas market.
The desirability of the acreage is further enhanced by the existing gas pipelines that cross the Licence area: these currently have spare capacity and provide access to attractive existing local gas markets.
Field visits have revealed the presence of additional surface oil seeps that indicate a significant oil play may also be possible.
The preparation of an independent Competent Person’s Report (“CPR“) covering the Saouaf Licence’s hydrocarbon potential and estimated resources is well advanced. This CPR will be released to market and made available on the Company’s website in the near future.
The  terms of the Saouaf Licence also allow the Company further scope to build on the initial acreage position.
As previously announced, Upland Saouaf will act as operator with ETAP as its partner in a 50:50 joint venture arrangement (the basis of which the Directors of Upland understand applies to the grant of all licences for exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons in Tunisia).  Upland Saouaf will meet the expenses of all exploration and appraisal work and, in the event of a new discovery, ETAP can elect at their sole discretion to take a participating interest of up to 50% in the development and exploitation of that new discovery, but is then required to pay a corresponding share of the past costs of such discovery and to fund its corresponding share of future costs.
The Licence is for an initial term of two years and may be converted and thereby extended in term at Upland Saouaf’s option as long as the work commitments of the initial term have been fulfilled within the two years and the work commitments of the next Licence phase are accepted. These commitments include drilling one new well.
Upland Saouaf’s work obligations in the first phase of the Saouaf Licence are to acquire, process and interpret 300 km of new 2D seismic data, to reprocess the existing 2D seismic data and to carry out certain geological and geophysical studies.
Upland has organised for a US$1 million bank guarantee to be lodged in favour of the Tunisian Government against these first phase work commitments. This is in place and will be released in a phased manner, as the work programme progresses.

Steve Staley, CEO of Upland Resources Limited, said:

“We are very pleased to have reached this major milestone on our attractive new Tunisian acreage. Upland has identified multiple conventional leads and prospects on the Saouaf Licence; the work programme is designed to reduce the risk on many of these considerably. We look forward to sharing the results of the CPR with shareholders in the near future. Upland has already started planning to enable the work to commence as soon as possible.”

This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of the Regulation (EU) No 596/2014 on market abuse

Upland Resources
Steve Staley, CEOTel: 07704 974784
Optiva Securities Limited
Jeremy King (Corporate Finance)Tel: 020 3137 1904
Christian Dennis (Corporate Broker)Tel: 020 3137 1903
FTI Consulting
Ben Brewerton/Molly StewartTel: +44 (0) 20 3727 1708
Flowcomms Ltd
Sasha SethiTel: +44 (0)7891 677441
Upland is an upstream oil & gas company whose highly experienced management team has a track record of creating major value for shareholders in junior oil & gas companies, including Cove Energy plc. The Company has extensive technical and commercial skills and contacts, management having held senior roles in Petronas, Conoco, Shell etc.