EMPIRE Oil & Gas has sold its stake in fellow Western Australian company Key Petroleum for $676,000 after withdrawing from a joint venture with the group earlier this year.

Empire sold its 52 million Key shares, roughly 9 per cent of the group’s total issued capital, for 1.3 cents each, it said.

“Empire considered the investment in Key to be non-core and that the proceeds of the sale would be better used to improve the Red Gully Processing Facility.”

Empire withdrew from Perth basin exploration permit 437 in March, assigning its 35% stake to the permit partners – operator Key (77%) and Caracal Exploration (23%).

At the time, Empire said its tenement review had found the position, prospectivity, risk and reward of the permit meant it was not core to Empire and did not meet its future risk-reward parameters.