Bulgarian authorities signed an exploration contract with Total SA covering the Khan Asparuh license in the Black Sea offshore Bulgaria.
Total said the license contains a number of oil and gas prospects. The company said Khan Asparuh represents the first time that this type of ultradeepwater abrupt margin play will have been explored outside Atlantic basins. Other such plays exist in French Guiana, Uruguay, Ivory Coast, and Mauritania, Total said.
The block, which was awarded in the January 2012 round, covers 14,220 sq km in 100-2,000 m of water 80-300 km off the coast.
Total has a 40% interest in the block, and OMV AG and Repsol have 30% each.