Shares in oil exploration technology firm ViaLogy leapt in early trading on Monday after the firm said one of the early adopters of its technology, Atascosa Exploration had successfully drilled another oil well in Texas using analysis provided by ViaLogy products. The latest success is the third commercially successful well Atascosa has drilled in the area using the new technology's recommended co-ordinates. Under its contract with Atascosa, ViaLogy will receive a 5 per cent Back-In-After-Payout (BIAPO) working interest. This means that the royalty will be paid on the net amount after drilling and production expenses have been covered. "We have made good progress in our discussions on new commercial services contracts for QuantumRD with [oil and gas] majors and should be able soon to comment publicly," said Robert Dean, the Chief Executive Officer of ViaLogy.
It was also a good day for investors in Berkeley Mineral Resources, the Zambia-focused minerals company. Shares rose in the aftermath of the publication of initial results of metallurgical processing tests at its Kabwe Mine. The estimates of 708,229 tonnes of contained lead and zinc metal, before processing, would have a value at today's LME spot market prices of approximately $1.4bn, the firm said.
News of accelerated drilling plans buoyed Nostra Terra Oil and Gas on Monday morning. The firm said a new back-to-back well drilling programme at its 30%-owned Bale Creek Prospect in Oklahoma would save money and should facilitate much quicker production.
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North River Resources said it would soon begin engineering design work at its Namib Lead Zinc Mine in Namibia after pumping 14.3m litres of water out of the site. This achievement would give it access to the lower levels of the mine, it said. As the water receded a number of samples were retrieved from newly exposed mining areas. The results from indicative testing on these had been "outstanding with high recoveries, fast float times and achieving a 56% zinc concentrate", the company said.
Max Petroleum, an oil and gas exploration and production company focused on Kazakhstan, announced that tests on its Uytas Field had confirmed that it the field is larger than previously thought. It also said it had made a significant conventional discovery in both the Cretaceous and Jurassic sections of the site that could add meaningful short-term production and cash flow. Max now estimates overall oil in place of 184m barrels. Its shares rose 3.2% on the news.
Shares in Chaarat Gold Holdings, the gold exploration company operating in the Kyrgyz Republic, plunged on Monday after it announced it was in negotiations with the government. The firm said the fiscal regime governing mining companies in the country was under review by the newly formed government and, in its opinion, was likely to change. Chaarat said that pending negotiations with the government, further capital investment activities - other than the infrastructure projects relating to power and roads which have already commenced - at its Tulkubash Project would be suspended until agreement was reached.
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