Circle Oil

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Circle Oil PLC
Public company
HeadquartersCork, Ireland
Area served
Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia
Key people
Stephen Jenkins
Mitch Flegg
Susan Prior
ProductsOil and Gas
RevenueUS$84.6 million (2014)
Number of employees

Circle Oil (AIM: COP) is an oil and gas exploration and production company based in Cork in the Republic of Ireland.[1] Its operations, all of which are in North Africa, specifically Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia, initially focussed on oil exploration but have expanded to include production.[2][3]


Circle Oil Maroc Ltd. (COML), a wholly owned subsidiary of Circle Oil Plc signed an Exploration and Exploitation Agreement with ONHYM (Office National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines (the State oil company) for the Sebou Permit in June 2006 (original area 296 km2, now 134 km2 after relinquishments). The permit is situated in the Rharb Basin. The Permit shareholding is COML 75% and ONHYM 25%. Circle is the operator of the license. Production is decided by sales contracts, the daily maxima in the region 6.8-7.1 MMscf/d gross.[4]

Circle recently completed its third drilling campaign in Morocco. Ten wells were drilled, 6 in the Sebou permit and 4 in Lalla Mimouna. Gas was discovered in both areas, with 6 of the ten wells yielding gas.[5]

In addition to its Moroccan drilling programme Circle has also successfully built a 55 km gas pipeline from the Sebou permit to the Kenitra Industrial zone. All of Circle's Moroccan gas is sold domestically in Morocco and is transported through this pipeline from the license to the end users in Kenitra.


Circle Oil’s acreage lies in the Gulf of Suez area. This basin covers approximately 19,000 km2. In early 2008 Circle Oil farmed into the North West Gemsa Block acquiring a 40% interest in the license from Premier Oil. Together they total around 82 km2 and are located roughly 300 km south of Cairo. The concessions are operated by a joint production company PetroAmir, whose partners include: EGPC, Zhen Hua (NPIC - 50% working interest and operator); Circle Oil Plc (40% working interest); and Sea Dragon Energy (10% working interest).[6]

Daily production from all Egyptian fields is around 7,000 bopd of 42° API oil and 10MMscfd gross. Following production of 17.63 MMbo through to the end of 2014, the 2P Gross Remaining Reserves were estimated in an independent Competent Person’s report to be 52.16 MMboe of oil, gas, and recoverable liquids (20.86 MMboe net to Circle Oil).[7]


Circle Oil Tunisia Ltd (a wholly owned subsidiary of Circle Oil Plc.) holds interests in two permits in Tunisia, the onshore Ras Marmour permit and the Mahdia permit offshore incorporating the Mahdia discovery.

In August 2014, Circle announced a significant discovery at The El Mediouni well, or EMD-1 in the Mahdia permit. The well encountered very good light oil shows across 133 metres. The Company estimated that the likely recoverable resourcee was approximately 100mln barrels. Circle subsequently added that it had been granted a six-month extension to the Mahdia permit to January 2015, and it has the right to make two further 3-year extensions by committing to drill at least one well in each period.[8] The company has indicated that it intends to seek a farm in partner with whom to develop the Mahdia discovery.[9]

Ras Marmour Permit is located in the south-east of Tunisia covering part of the Island of Djerba and south of the Gulf of Gabès. The permit covers 1,564 km2 and is located in the vicinity of two significant hydrocarbon discoveries and a number of smaller ones. Circle Oil Tunisia holds a 23% working interest in the permit. The operator and partner is Exxoil S A., a local Tunisian company.[10]

In addition to the two exploration permits, Circle also have an interest in the Beni Khalled production license in Tunisia. Under the terms of the farm in agreement with Exxoil SA, Circle Oil will acquire an initial 30% interest in the Licence in return for funding a 50 km2 3D seismic programme and one well. Historical production on the license has so far produced some 1.2 MMbo and Circle estimates indicate the field now has up to 0.5 MMbo remaining to be produced.[10]


  1. ^ Flanagan, Peter (9 September 2011). "Tullow refocuses in Tanzania". Irish Independent. Retrieved 26 October 2013.
  2. ^ Flanagan, Peter (16 September 2013). "Circle lines up chairman candidate". Irish Independent. Retrieved 26 October 2013.
  3. ^ "Circle Oil reports 19% rise in half yearly revenues". RTÉ. 2 September 2013. Retrieved 26 October 2013.
  4. ^ Circle Oil. "Circle Oil Operations - Morocco". Circle Oil. Retrieved November 3, 2015.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ Hilliard, Mark. "Circle Oil confirms sixth Moroccan well". Irish Times.
  6. ^ Circle Oil. "Circle Oil Operations - Egypt". Circle Oil. Retrieved November 3, 2015.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Circle Oil. "Circle Oil Operations - Egypt". Circle Oil. Retrieved November 3, 2015.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Proactive Investors. "Circle Oil soars on new oil discovery offshore Tunisia". Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  9. ^ Geoff, Percival. "Irish Examiner". Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  10. ^ a b Circle Oil. "Circle Oil Operations - Tunisia". Circle Oil. Retrieved November 3, 2015.[permanent dead link]


External links[edit]

  • ^ "Irish Oil Company Says It Found Gas in Its First Well Drilled in Morocco". Morocco World News. 1 July 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2015.