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Malta: The Strategic, Painless Next Big Venue

Malta, in the heart of the Mediterranean, hasn’t made that one major find to make commercial extraction viable just yet, but it’s only a matter of time--and the low-level security and political risk make this venue a haven for prospective investors looking for the next big offshore opportunity.

Israeli finds in the Mediterranean’s Levant Basin provide us with enough of a prospective geological backstory here to spark interest in Malta. And when you consider the Malta’s offshore area is 150 times the size of its onshore territory—and larger than Israel’s continental shelf—the prospects suddenly widen.

We’re also keen on taking cue from investor darling, Anglo-Turkic Genel Energy Plc, which is banking on a big find offshore Malta.

Malta is a good venue even for the juniors, particularly because the risk is so much lower compared to other venues. Genel acquired a 75% interest in four offshore blocks in Malta in 2012, and in a recent interview with Oilprice, the company’s CEO, Tony Hayward (of BP fame), told us a bit about why Genel is optimistic about the venue.

“As with all of our acreage [it’s about] geology. As we have expanded outside Africa we have targeted opportunities to take material interests in high impact prospects, with the potential for field sizes of at least 250 million bbls. Malta and Morocco both fall firmly in these categories and, while expectations are dangerous…

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