The outline of a pivotal partnership deal was agreed in January, before the coronavirus pandemic hit and crude prices collapsed.
Israeli oil firm Navitas Petroleum has signed heads of terms for a farm-in deal which envisaged it taking 30% of the Sea Lion oil field development project in the Falklands.
Adding another party to the venture it promised to spread the project and funding risks beyond existing partners Premier Oil PLC (LON:PMO) and Rockhopper, and, as such, saw the project advance closer to a sanctioning decision.
In a statement, today, addressing the impacts of the covid-19 coronavirus, Rockhopper said: “Good progress has been made during the first quarter of 2020 to convert the heads of terms into fully documented agreements.
“Despite the current oil price weakness, all parties remain committed to the finalisation of the Navitas farm out agreement with completion subject to agreed consents and approvals.”
Rockhopper noted that it retains a modest presence in Italy – which had previously scaled back due to environmental and regulatory uncertainty – and said its day to day operations remain unaffected by the spread of virus, and, that necessary contingency measures are in place.
The company also noted the recent close of its disposal of Egyptian assets, and, said that as of 13 March it was in a “relatively stable” financial position with some US$23mln of cash and no debt.
Rockhopper is due to release its financial results statement for 2019 on or around 7 April.