Premier Oil has been awarded Block 30 in the Sureste Basin and Blocks 11 and 13 in the Burgos Basin, in Mexico's Round 3.1 held in Mexico City on 27 March, it announced on Wednesday.
The London-listed firm said it, together with its joint venture partners DEA - the operator at 40% - and Sapura Energy at 30%, was awarded Block 30 in the shallow water Sureste basin, which it described as a "proven and prolific" hydrocarbon province in the Gulf of Mexico.
It said Block 30 was located directly to the south west of its Zama discovery, and to the north of the Amoca oil field.
Premier said it had identified numerous material leads and prospects on Block 30 in the tertiary clastic plays, typical of the Sureste Basin.
Several of the prospects identified exhibied direct hydrocarbon indicators (DHI) on existing 3D seismic, significantly de-risking the potential of the block.
Those anomalies were said to be similar to those seen at the Zama and Amoca oil fields.
The forward plan on Block 30 was to acquire further 3D seismic in 2019, ahead of firming up drilling locations for 2020.
Meanwhile, Premier was also awarded 100% operated interests in Blocks 11 and 13 in the Burgos Basin, where it had leveraged its growing understanding of the Mexican shelf to gain early access to the "highly prospective" basin directly inboard of the prolific deep water Perdido fold belt.
The company had mapped several structural closures on existing 3D seismic in analogous plays to those proven in the onshore Burgos basin and offshore the US Gulf of Mexico.
It said the exploration targets were Pliocene to Miocene in age, with extensive regional mapping and basin maturity modelling suggesting access to oil charge.
The initial work programme would include reprocessing existing 3D seismic, which would enable Premier to better define the trapping geometries in the extensional play setting and to de-risk a potentially material oil play.
"The outcome of this highly competitive licensing round is a fantastic success for Premier and its partners," said CEO Tony Durrant.
"We are delighted to have been awarded Block 30, the most contested block in the round."
Durrant said the award increased the firm's footprint in the prolific, shallow water part of the Sureste Basin.
"The award of Blocks 11 and 13 provides us with a low cost entry into the Burgos basin, where we will look to repeat the first mover advantage we enjoyed in the Sureste Basin with the Zama discovery.
"The awards significantly enhance our existing acreage position in Mexico and have the potential to deliver significant organic growth for our business in the longer term."