British company Desire Petroleum announced yesterday that the oil found in the British-controlled Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) 300 miles off the coast of Argentina, may be unviable. Shares in the company fell by nearly half when it released a statement saying that oil found in the Liz 14/19-1 well “…may be present in thin intervals but that reservoir quality is poor.”
The company started drilling last month, after estimating that there was potential for as much as 3.5 billion barrels of oil to be extracted. Exploration has fueled tensions between Argentina and Great Britain, which went to war over the islands in 1982. In February the Argentine government announced that it would require permits of all ships sailing between its shores and the Falkands.
Desire petroleum has said that it will release a full statement this week when exploration operations are complete.