(Sharecast News) - Guyana and Namibia-focussed oil and gas exploration company Eco Atlantic Oil & Gas announced on Wednesday that, further to its update on 13 September, Guyanese president and petroleum minister David Granger had approved the transfer of the 25% working interest in the Orinduik Block, offshore Guyana, from its subsidiary Eco Atlantic Guyana to Total Petroleum's subsidiary company Total E&P Activités Pétrolières. The AIM-traded firm said Total was to transfer Eco Atlantic $12.5m in exchange for the interest. As a result, Eco Atlantic was now fully funded for current 2019 drill programme on Orinduik. In September last year, Total paid $1m for an option to farm into a 25% working interest in Orinduik upon delivery of processed 3D data from the 2,550 square kilometre survey shot on the block by Eco and its operating partner Tullow. On 12 September this year, Total exercised its right to acquire the 25% interest from Eco Atlantic, and with government approval now having been received for the transfer, Total would shortly pay Eco an additional $12.5m cash consideration in accordance with the option. Following the formal completion of the transaction, the working interests on the block would be the operator, Tullow, at 60%; Total at 25%; and Eco Atlantic at 15%. "We are pleased to have received approval from president Granger so promptly after submitting all of the requested transfer documents," said Eco Atlantic chief operating officer Colin Kinley. "The new team in the ministry were thorough and effective in this swift and timely approval process and this allows the Orinduik partners to next focus on our 2019 drilling programme." Gil Holzman, chief executive officer of Eco Atlantic, added that the company wa "very glad" to be able to move ahead effectively and swiftly in Guyana, significantly ahead of its committed licence schedule. "We are thankful to the Guyana authorities and the honourable president for their approval to allow us to bring Total into the block. "Eco's team brought Orinduik to the table prior to the first ExxonMobil Liza discovery, deeming the block to be a high-graded opportunity, selected from multiple basins we had researched and evaluated around the world." Holzman said the board as "delighted" to see Orinduik maturing into what had the potential to be a large-scale field. "Following the joint signature of the petroleum agreement with Tullow, and now with Total's option exercise, our belief in the prospectivity of the block and our strategy to partner with world class oil companies is only strengthened. "We look forward to drilling at least one well on Orinduik alongside our partners in 2019. "With the $12.5m that we will now receive from Total, and together with our current strong cash position we are fully funded for our drilling programme."
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