LONDON, Dec. 19 (UPI) -- Gulfsands Petroleum Chief Executive Officer Mahdi Sajjad said Thursday he was optimistic about commercial gas prospects in Morocco despite a slow start.
Gulfsands, which has headquarters in London, said the first two wells of a four-well program encountered natural gas in the company's Rharb Center permit area but the quantities were less than what was considered commercial.
"With the steep learning curve involved in drilling these wells now behind us and 3D seismic data soon to be available for locating the wells in the rest of our commitment well program, we are optimistic for the prospects of building a successful commercial gas sales business in Morocco," he said in a statement.
Seismic surveys help energy companies get a better understanding of reserve potential. A second phase of five exploration wells is planned in the same area next year.
The CIA World Factbook estimates as of January 2012, Morocco has proven natural gas reserves of 49 billion cubic feet, 98th in the world.