Repsol Gets Support for Drilling Campaign Off Canary Islands

El Golfo bay Western Lanzarote Canary islands
El Golfo bay, Western Lanzarote, Canary islands, Spain, file image (c) Shutterstock/anyaivanova

By Todd White

June 24 (Bloomberg) — Repsol SA’s plans to explore for oil off the Spanish Canary Islands in a $10 billion project won backing from the nation’s Supreme Court.

The justices rejected seven appeals against Repsol’s exploration permits, and sentence will be published in coming days, according to a court official who spoke on condition their name not be used.

Today’s favorable ruling removes one of the last few hurdles remaining for the biggest Spanish biggest oil company to begin drilling off Fuerteventura and Lanzarote islands near West Africa. Should Repsol discover oil, it has estimated the project will cost 7.5 billion euros ($10.2 billion).

Fuerteventura Island, within the Canary Islands archipelago
Fuerteventura Island, within the Canary Islands archipelago

The appeals contested the Spanish government’s decision in 2012 to reapprove exploration permits that were originally given in 2001. They had been held up since that year in court battles and administrative delays.

Copyright 2014 Bloomberg.