- North Celtic Sea-focussed Lansdowne Oil & Gas [LON:LOGP] and Providence Resources [LON:PVR] were the sector's biggest risers after the latter confirmed farm-out talks on the Barryroe oil field.

Lansdowne - which has a 20% interest in the field - was up by more than 21% in late trading after it noted a release by Providence which confirmed press speculation concerning farm-out discussions.

Providence - up by more than 11% - said that is in commercial discussions with a number of interested third parties in relation to the Barryroe asset.

It said: "The nature of these discussions involve the evaluation of the field on a phased development basis, with plans to establish an early production phase, to be followed by further phases of field appraisal and development, designed to steadily increase production rates to maximise the returns from the field.

"The ultimate development programme would be conditional, inter alia, on the receipt of all necessary regulatory approvals."

* * *

PetroNeft [LON:PTR], owner and operator of Licences 61 and 67, Tomsk Oblast, Russian Federation, expects to execute binding legal agreements within the next week for the farmout of a 50% interest in Licence 61.

* * *

Latin America-focussed Global Energy Development [LON:GED] has issued an update on the upcoming re-entry of the Catalina #1 well to test the Simiti formation in the Bolivar association contract located in the northern section of the Magdalena Valley in Colombia. The design stage of the project has been completed in conjunction with Ely and Associates, a US-based engineering firm specialising in hydraulic fracturing technology, together with a major oil field service provider which will perform the upcoming fracture stimulation of the Simiti formation in the existing Catalina #1 well.

Rig mobilisation is expected to commence in late second quarter 2014 once all necessary service equipment has been delivered to the well site. The Company has acquired high pressure wellhead and downhole equipment and has ordered and obtained the necessary sand to be used in the fracture stimulation.

All of the stimulation water handling equipment is complete, in place and has been tested. The company has also completed significant preparation of the physical facilities at the Catalina well site, including the installation of pump station facilities and water transport lines to treat and transport produced water to four 10,000 barrel storage tanks onsite.

The Company will be installing oil and water connection lines from the well testing equipment to the existing oil, gas and water handling, separation and disposition facilities on site. The company previously completed the analysis of open hole well logs, including formation imaging measurements and whole core data taken from the Simiti oil located within the existing Catalina #1 well, originally drilled in 1998.

Managing director Steve Voss said: "We look forward to updating on further progress on the well re-entry that is being fully funded by our farm-out partner. We believe that the testing for light oil in the Simiti formation in the Catalina #1 well will enhance future strategic alternatives and provide greater value for the Company and its shareholders.

"With a project of this kind in Colombia, there is a significant lead time in obtaining equipment and vendor services before well operations can commence. We have completed a substantial amount of this work to date. The recent Bolivar partnering agreement now allows the company to focus its technical and financial resources on developing its largest reserve-based asset, the Bolivar contract."

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Northern Petroleum's [LON:NOP] full-year pre-tax loss to 27.3m euros, from a loss of 6.2m euros. Revenue was 0.59m euros, from 0.66m euros. The results were hurt by a 17.7m euros impairment loss, from nil.

"Last year was a period of significant change for Northern Petroleum," said CEO Keith Bush in a statement.

"The Board and management started a process that was necessary to position the business for growth.

"In addition to the main actions of selling the Netherlands subsidiary, establishing a new board and starting production in Canada, much work has been undertaken internally to create a company that can operate in a competitive industry environment and has credibility in a tough investment market."

* * *

Independent Resources [LON:IRG] is waiting to be told the date when Tunisia's Consultative Commission on Hydrocarbons will meet to hear an application for the company to be operator of the Ksar Hadada licence.

Tunisia's national oil company, Entreprise Tunisienne d'Activités Pétrolières made an application on 19 February to Tunisia's Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mines for Independent Resources to be the operator of the Ksar Hadada licence with an interest of 86.345% of the production sharing contract for the extension period of two years.

The final step before the formal gazetting of the approval is the meeting of the Consultative Commission on Hydrocarbons, which formally recommends approval to the minister.

The company says it is waiting to be notified of the date of the CCH meeting having complied with all of the required obligations in relation to the application. A further announcement will be made once the company receives a determination from the CCH.

* * *

Europa Oil & Gas [LON:EOG] posted pre-tax profits of £0.45m for the six months to the end of January - up from £0.20m last time.

Revenues were slightly lower at £2.1m -dowmn from £2.2m - and net cash generated from operations fell to £0.6m (H1 2013: £1.0m).

Chief executive Hugh Mackay said: "Europa is fully funded for four exploration wells. Onshore UK we expect two exploration wells, Wressle and Kiln Lane, will be spudded in 2014, and we have further drilling candidates to follow.

"This summer we expect a drilling decision for our offshore Ireland licences which if positive may lead to two exploration wells, one in FEL 2/13 and one in FEL 3/ 13. Europa's costs for both these potential wells are already funded by farm-in and the first one could be as early as 2015.

"Finally in France we have commenced well planning and permitting for a Berenx Shallow exploration well in parallel with farmout activity. Exploration success in the UK will boost cash flow and will enable portfolio growth; we believe exploration success in France or Ireland would be a company maker."

At 4:18pm:

[LON:AUR] Aurum Mining PLC share price was +0.01p at 1.38p

[LON:BOR] Borders Southern Petroleum PLC share price was +0.01p at 12.88p

[LON:CHAR] Chariot Oil Gas Ltd share price was +0.25p at 23.75p

[LON:DGO] Dragon Oil PLC share price was -7.5p at 596p

[LON:ENQ] EnQuest Plc share price was -0.2p at 127p

[LON:FOGL] Falkland Oil Gas Ltd share price was +0.63p at 25.13p

[LON:GED] Global Energy Development PLC share price was +1p at 69.5p

[LON:GKP] Gulf Keystone Petroleum share price was +0.5p at 93.5p

[LON:GPX] Gulfsands Petroleum PLC share price was +1.26p at 51.63p

[LON:INDI] Indus Gas Ltd share price was +0.25p at 550.25p

[LON:LOGP] Lansdowne Oil Gas PLC share price was +3.25p at 18.25p

[LON:NOP] Northern Petroleum PLC share price was 0p at 26.5p

[LON:PET] Petrel Resources PLC share price was 0p at 10.25p

[LON:PTR] Petroneft Resources PLC share price was +0.21p at 5.68p

[LON:PVR] Providence Resources PLC share price was +20.5p at 202.5p

[LON:RKH] Rockhopper Exploration PLC share price was -2.75p at 94.5p

[LON:RPT] Regal Petroleum PLC share price was -0.75p at 9.75p

[LON:XEL] Xcite Energy Ltd share price was -0.25p at 68.75p

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