(Reuters) – Egdon Resources (EGRE.L), Britain’s third-biggest shale gas exploration licence holder, is looking for more large oil and gas companies to become partners in its projects, Managing Director Mark Abbott told Reuters.
Britain is estimated to have sizeable shale gas resources which the government hopes will be extracted to reduce the country’s dependence on imports.
Progress to get shale gas out of the ground has been slow, however, as public opposition based on environmental concerns has delayed planning applications.
Egdon, a small oil and gas explorer listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market, hopes to attract investors with deep pockets to help finance its shale gas drilling campaign.
“We’ll be looking to introduce partners of the stature of Total, with the skills that they bring,” Abbott told Reuters.
Egdon last year concluded a partnership deal with French energy giant Total (TOTF.PA) in exchange for a shale gas licence stake.
Egdon rivals IGas (IGAS.L) and Cuadrilla Resources have signed similar deals with Total, GDF Suez (GSZ.PA) and Centrica (CNA.L), paving the way for more involvement by major energy companies in the sector.
Abbott said he was waiting for the results of a government-led licensing round for new shale gas licences, expected in late summer, before starting serious discussions with potential partners.
(Reporting by Karolin Schaps; Editing by Mark Potter)