Tullow announced Monday the government in Greenland approved its acquisition of a 40-percent stake in a license from Maersk Oil for work in Baffin Bay. Maersk Oil, which has headquarters in Texas, stays on as the operator in the so-called Tooq license.
Angus McCoss, exploration director for Tullow, described the Tooq license is "unexplored" but "highly prospective."
The license area covers about 4,500 square miles off the northwest coast of Greenland. The company said the work program for the next two years focuses on seismic data acquisition that could help determine the resource potential.
"The decision whether or not to enter the next phase and drill an exploration well on the Tooq license will be made after the seismic evaluation has been completed," the company said in a statement.
Cairn Energy, a company based in Scotland, had said its campaign for 2011 targeted Greenland's resource potential of 3.2 million barrels of oil equivalent.
Last year, however, the company announced that it plugged and abandoned an exploration well off the Greenland coast "without encountering hydrocarbon shows."