(Image courtesy of Tullow Oil)

Tullow Oil has declared force majeure on its offshore exploration block in Guinea following a U.S. regulatory investigation of its project partner Hyperdynamics Corp.

The investigation follows Guinea’s petitions to the G8 countries to help it track corrupt deals.

The U.S. Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission are currently investigating how Hyperdynamics obtained and retained concession rights in Guinea.

Hyperdynamics has rights to nearly one third of the country’s offshore oil blocks.

“Tullow has decided that it cannot proceed with activities on the licence until these issues are resolved. Tullow hopes for a speedy resolution to these issues and looks forward to continue operation with its partners in Guinea,” a Tullow Oil spokesman said.

Hyperdynamics, Tullow, and Dana Petroleum are exploring a 7,239 square-mile area off the African coast.

Tullow Oil said last month that it was planning to start drilling off Guinea together with its partners in the second quarter of 2014.

Hyperdynamics said in a statement on Wednesday that it was unable to predict the impact and timing of Tullow’s force majeure declaration.


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