Dubai: Ras Al Khaimah Gas Commission, a government-owned gas distributor, is looking at a new area of business by joining an exploration venture in Tanzania.

It holds a 25 per cent stake in the project in which Dubai-based oil and gas explorer Black Marlin Energy is also a partner.

The involvement of Ras Al Khaimah Gas Commission in energy exploration would be outside its main activity of distributing gas to consumers in the emirate.

It has previously signed contracts for receiving gas from Oman and Dolphin Gas Project, an Abu Dhabi-led initiative that is bringing Qatari gas to the UAE.

The Ras Al Khaimah company's other partners in Tanzania's Kiliwani-1 project are Ndovu Resources, a unit of London-listed oil and gas firm Aminex, Australia's Key Petroleum and Bounty Oil and Gas.

Major player

Ndovu is the project's operator and controls the majority 39 per cent stake.

"The partners are expecting to find gas and gas condensates," Black Marlin director Eric Fore told Gulf News.

He said output will be sold to power and industrial users in Tanzania.

An exploration well is being drilled and the rig is expected to reach the targeted depth by December-end.

The drilled depth is expected to reach 2,500 metres and the target location is designed to test lower cretaceous sandstones which are the reservoirs at the Songo-Songo producing gas field, about 200 km from Dar Es Salaam.

The well was located from the interpretation of more than 260 kilometres of transition zone 2D seismic work acquired in late 2006-07.