China’s CNOOC Ltd has agreed to collaborate with Australian minnow FAR Ltd to search for oil and gas prospects in what is considered to be en encouraging frontier off Senegal and Gambia over the next two years, Reuters reported.

According to Petroleum Africa, FAR Ltd. and CNOOC UK signed an Area of Mutual Interest (AMI) agreement that covers selected licenses offshore Senegal and The Gambia. The AMI states that FAR and CNOOC will partner in evaluating, bidding, negotiating and managing JVs on farm-in and open acreage opportunities for oil and gas licenses.

“The partnership and AMI (Area of Mutual Interest agreement) with CNOOC UK dramatically enhances FAR’s ability to acquire new assets in our core strategic geographic area of expertise,” FAR Managing Director, Cath Norman stated.

Previously FAR announced that it is collaborating with Woodside Petroleum and Cairn Energy to develop a deepwater oil field in Senegal and in late March it acquired an 80% stake in blocks off Gambia, just south of the Senegal acreage, from Erin Energy Corp. FAR plans to sell part of its stake in the Gambian acreage over the next 18 months to gain from $25m to $30m to be used in funding an exploration well there in late 2018.