Canadian exploration cooperation, Vangold Resources Limited has agreed with the government of Rwanda to enter into talks for a special exploration license.
The firm is currently involved in oil and gas exploration actives in the prospective Kivu Graben.
According to Dr. Albert Butare, the Minister of State in Charge of Energy, Vangold is currently undertaking technical evaluation study for possible exploration.
The study is undertaken within the Technical Evaluation Agreement (TEA) that was signed earlier to assess oil possibilities in parts of Nyungwe and Gishwati forests the Western Province, as well as areas around Lake Kivu.
“They (Vangold) are now going to do final touches and they will need to carry out seismic studies which are done by specialized companies,” Dr. Butare said, adding “this means we need to agree on a Special Hydrocarbon Exploration License – SHEL.”
According to Dr. Butare, the imminent seismic activity is part of the exploration, the last stage, which shows sedimentary layers and gives very close or probable locations for drilling.
Explaining that government was now preparing for the negotiations, Butare noted that seismic studies are not 100 percent conclusive, and noted that SHEL is an accepted but “temporally understanding” before another lengthy process of getting to sign a Production Sharing Agreement (PSA).
On April 30, Vangold and the Government had agreed to extend – by another 90 days – the oil survey.
TEA was the Corporation’s initial commitment, signed in October 2007, when it started the long process of oil exploration after being granted exclusive rights to assess the petroleum potential on the Rwandan side of the western branch of the East African rift system (EARS).
Vangold now considers the proposed SHEL as the next step in the gas and oil exploration programme in the sedimentary basin of the Rwandan Kivu Graben, covering 1,631 square kms.
“We have been very pleased with the geochemical, geophysical and other technical data that Vangold, together with its consultants, have developed on Lake Kivu in Rwanda under the terms of the TEA,” Dal Brynelsen, Vangold President is quoted in acommuniqué as saying.
“Based on the partially completed 2008 gravity and magnetic survey, we have identified a 400 square km basin under Lake Kivu,” continued Brynelsen.
“We want to increase our Rwandan exploration activities and look forward to working closely with the Rwandan government to successfully complete the SHEL.”
The Kivu Graben is located south of Uganda’s Albertine Graben on Lake Albert, where Tullow Oil plc and Heritage Oil, two other oil explorers have hit it big on oil and gas.