Gulfsands Petroleum plc has been awarded an extension to its Moulay Bouchta petroleum agreement in Morocco, Proactive Investors reported. Following the extension agreement with Morocco’s Office National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines (ONHYM), the initial phase will now run for an extra year to June 2017.

According to Gulfsands, the extension comes with a revised work program for the Initial Phase consisting of the acquisition of 200km of 2D line seismic; the reprocessing, and interpretation of selected legacy 2D seismic data; and a legacy field study with the aim to identify any potential for re-activation. Accordingly, the estimated cost of the work program as specified in the amendment to the petroleum agreement has been reduced from $3.5m to $2.5m.

Gulfsands’ Moroccan subsidiary will immediately seek to begin the environmental impact study in anticipation of commencing the seismic acquisition. The company is already in discussions with ONHYM to secure a further extension to allow additional time to complete the revised work program, which will focus on an oil prospective area identified to the east of the depleted Haricha oil field.

Gulfsands remains interested in finding a partner to farm in to the Moulay Bouchta permit.