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Cabot Energy PLC Update on Italian assets

14/02/2019 7:00am

UK Regulatory (RNS & others)


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RNS Number : 9549P

Cabot Energy PLC

14 February 2019

Prior to publication, the information contained within this announcement was deemed by the Company to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014. With the publication of this announcement, this information is now considered to be in the public domain.

14 February 2019

Cabot Energy plc

("Cabot Energy" or the "Company")

Update on Italian assets

As indicated in the announcement of 12 February, Cabot Energy (AIM: CAB), the AIM quoted oil and gas company focussed on creating predictable production growth in Canada, confirms that late on 12 February 2019, the Italian government signed a decree which enacts the suspension of work on oil and gas exploration permits or applications for new exploration permits in Italy whilst a review is undertaken. The period given for the review is up to 18 months. The suspension will be lifted as soon as consensus is reached on the terms under which the different areas will proceed with oil and gas exploration. In the event that no consensus is reached within 24 months, the suspension will be lifted.

During the suspension period, the Ministries of Economic Development and Environment will review all areas in the Italian onshore and offshore territories as part of the Plan for Sustainable Energy Transition of Suitable Areas ("PTESAI") Bill, to determine which are suitable for sustainable hydrocarbon prospecting, exploration and development activities.

Following the assessment of areas, a decision will be taken whether to allow further exploration activity or to reduce or withdraw licences in that area. Should agreement not be reached between The Government and The Regions on all on-shore licences within 24 months, the suspension will be lifted and rulings will only be issued for offshore areas.

Cabot Energy confirms that its exploration licences went through a rigorous environmental review and is hopeful for a positive outcome. However, the moratorium provides the opportunity for the Company to evaluate its future strategy in both its onshore Po Valley Cascina Alberto exploration permit with its partner, Shell Italia, and in its 100 per cent owned and operated offshore permits in the Southern Adriatic and Sicily Channel. Cabot Energy has five permits and seven applications in process in total in Italy.

The legislation makes allowance for compensation for companies that are impacted. Should it become necessary, Cabot Energy could seek compensation for all exploration costs up to the withdrawal date.

Scott Aitken, Chief Executive Officer, commented: "This new legislation is not a ban on exploration. It allows the Italian government to reappraise the exploration licences it has granted. Cabot Energy will ensure the Company is prepared to rapidly progress our licences as soon as the review is completed, whenever that occurs within the next 18 months.

"Cabot Energy's focus remains the funding of a scalable and repeatable development drilling programme in Canada. As announced in November 2018, our Canadian assets have shown great promise with an annual increase of 26% in gross Net Proven plus Probable reserves to 3.6 mmboe as well as a 339% increase in gross reserves and resources of the Canadian asset to 42.2 mmboe. We will continue to work with the authorities in Italy and remain hopeful of either securing a positive outcome for our exploration licences or receiving appropriate compensation at the end of the two-year assessment period."

Enquiries:

 
Cabot Energy Plc                          +44 (0)20 7469 2900 
Scott Aitken, CEO 
 Petro Mychalkiw, CFO 
 
SP Angel Corporate Finance LLP            +44 (0)20 3470 0470 
Nominated Adviser and Joint Broker 
David Hignell, Richard Hail, Richard 
 Redmayne 
 
GMP FirstEnergy                           +44 (0)20 7448 0200 
Joint Broker 
Jonathan Wright, David van Erp 
 
Luther Pendragon                          +44 (0)20 7618 9100 
Financial PR 
Harry Chathli, Alexis Gore, Joe Quinlan 
 

Note to Editors:

Cabot Energy (AIM: CAB) is an oil and gas company focussed on creating predictable production growth in Canada. Comprehensive information on Cabot Energy and its oil and gas operations, including press releases, annual reports and interim reports are available from Cabot Energy's website: www.cabot-energy.com

This information is provided by RNS, the news service of the London Stock Exchange. RNS is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a Primary Information Provider in the United Kingdom. Terms and conditions relating to the use and distribution of this information may apply. For further information, please contact rns@lseg.com or visit www.rns.com.

END

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February 14, 2019 02:00 ET (07:00 GMT)

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