The South African Petroleum Authorities confirmed Royal Dutch Shell plc as the successful bidder for exploration rights in the Orange Basin deep-water area, off the country’s west coast. Shell and the government will now negotiate the details of an exploration contract.
The exploration area covers approximately 37,000 square kilometres, about the size of the Netherlands. It is located in water between 500 metres and 4,000 metres deep and has so far seen limited exploration activity.
“The Orange Basin offers an exciting frontier exploration opportunity to apply the deep water technical ability we have built up around the world over the past three decades,” said Ceri Powell, Executive Vice President International Exploration.
Shell has been active in retail in South Africa since 1904 and in refining since 1963. This is the first time Shell will be involved in exploring for oil and gas in South Africa.