The Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (DCENR) has approved Cairn’s farm-in as Operator with a 38% working interest (WI) in two exploration licences (FEL 2/04 and FEL 4/08) and one licensing option covering 2,753 km2 in the Porcupine Basin offshore West of Ireland.

Cairn has also today entered into a contract to secure a drilling rig for the planned Spanish Point appraisal well in licence FEL 2/04.

Cairn and its Joint Venture (JV) partners: Chrysaor (26% WI), Providence Resources (32% WI) and SOSINA Exploration Ltd (SOSINA) (4% WI), will use the “Blackford Dolphin” which is an enhanced Aker H3 deep-water semi submersible drilling rig.

Subject to obtaining the necessary approvals the rig which underwent a $400 million deepwater upgrade in 2006 will be mobilised to begin operations on this well in Q2 2014.