Malta has awarded a one-year oil exploration licence to Edison International in areas north of the island. The Times reports that the company had been granted a licence to explore offshore blocks 1, 2 and 3 totalling approximately 6,400 square kilometres, the government said.
The company is to conduct geological and geophysical studies on existing data. The licence may be extended by a further two years subject to an additional work programme.
The Times adds that oil exploration off Malta has been at a standstill over the past few years but in late 2017 the government appeared to be trying to start a new push for exploration when it issued a notice in the official journal of the European Union saying that Blocks 1, 2 and 3 were available “for authorisation on a permanent basis under either an exploration licence or an exploration and production licence”.