COTT Oil and Gas has withdrawn from its stake in petroleum prospecting licences PPL 435 and PPL 436 – leaving its 50 per cent stake in both permits to Kina Petroleum.

Cott said the decision was made following a review of its expenditure commitments over the licences alongside their immediate prospectivity.

Withdrawing from the licences would help the company to conserve funds, Cott said.

Kina, which now becomes the sole owner of the interests, said in an announcement that the withdrawal would occur with immediate effect, subject to government approval.

A seismic reprocessing program would start in each licence, aiming to define the areas which would be the focus of future seismic acquisition programs, the company said.

These would focus on the Aiambak and Lake Murray East leads in PPL 435 and the Dalbert, Sturt, Alligator and Oriomo prospects in PPL 436.

Current seismic interpretation aimed to confirm the stratigraphy and thickness of reservoir sequences at the prospects, Kina said, adding that it believed a viable oil source was present within the structures surrounding the prospect fairway defined by an aerogravity program Kina completed in 2014.

Kina Petroleum managing director Richard Schroder said the company was pleased to consolidate its interests in the licences.

“Both licences contain leads which are of considerable size and which are commercially attractive due to their accessibility, relatively shallow depth and proximity to discovered hydrocarbons in the Western Province,” he said.

“The upcoming seismic re-processing and acquisition programs will provide us with further clarity of the prospectivity of these leads ahead of drilling.”

“Clearly, in the event of a discovery, the licences are well located for potential inclusion in any development either on a stand-alone basis or as part of a Western Province aggregation strategy.”