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Ascent Resources To Consider Options Outside Slovenia, Refreshes Board

Mon, 14th Jan 2019 09:45

LONDON (Alliance News) - Ascent Resources PLC on Monday said it has resumed its previous strategy to expand its interests beyond Slovenia while continuing to focus on a way forward to develop the reserves at Petisovci.

The stock was trading 0.8% lower on Monday at 0.32 pence a share in London.

The AIM-listed oil & gas company said it had been focused on a development of its high-potential Petisovci project in north-eastern Slovenia.

However, since beginning export production in November 2017, the company said it has been unable to build on this achievement and develop the project as planned due to permitting issues.

The Petisovci project partners have applied for two separate permits, the IPPC permit, and the re-stimulation permit.

The IPPC permit would allow the joint venture to install a processing facility to treat gas produced from the field to a standard suitable for the Slovenian national grid, while the re-stimulation permit would allow the existing wells to be worked over to bring their production back to full potential.

Ascent said it had experienced procedural issues with Slovenian Environment Agency leading to the delays in the permitting process. However, the company said it remains hopeful that both permits will be issued in due course.

The company said its gas production in December from Slovenian assets totalled 420,559 cubic metres, down from 463,283 cubic metres produced in November.

For the full year, Ascent expects to report gas production of 12 million cubic metres and revenue of EUR2.1 million. In 2017, gas output was 6.2 million cubic metres, with revenue totalling EUR814,000.

Looking ahead, Ascent intends to expand its interests beyond Slovenia, focusing on new projects in the region, with well-developed oil & gas infrastructure, a proven working petroleum system and an established regulatory and legal framework.

The company said it will concentrate on opportunities that offer near-term drilling and production or where there is scope to unlock material reserves through appraisal drilling.

In addition, Ascent said Chief Executive Colin Hutchinson, recently working on a part-time basis, has resumed a full-time position.

The company also has appointed John Buggenhagen as chief operating officer. Buggenhagen is an experienced and dynamic geophysicist with 20 years' working knowledge of the industry, Ascent said. He was previously serving as CEO of Palomar Natural Resources, a Poland-focussed exploration and production company.

Clive Carver, non-executive chair, has resigned with immediate effect to focus on his other directorships, and Non-Executive Director Cameron Davies will replace him. Nigel Moore, another non-executive director, will retire once a suitable replacement has been appointed.

"While the Petisovci project remains a potentially very valuable asset, I am pleased that we now have a way forward that is not entirely based on Slovenia and the award of permits," said Hutchinson.

By Evelina Grecenko;

Copyright 2019 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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