Touchstone Exploration Inc (LON:TXP) revealed this week that it had spudded the hotly anticipated Chinook-1 well, its latest exploration test within the Ortoire block, Trinidad as it posted as second-quarter operational update and financial results.

The Chinook-1 well is targeting hydrocarbon prospects in the Herrera formation, the same horizon found in the successful Coho and Cascadura discoveries. It will be drilled to depth of 9,880 feet and the drill programme is expected to take 40 days.

“The spudding of the Chinook well marks the next phase of our Ortoire block exploration program that has already delivered two successful natural gas wells in just over a year,” Paul Baay, Touchstone chief executive said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Tower Resources PLC (LON:TRP) said it has held detailed talks over a loan facility that could cover work programmes ongoing at the Thali production-sharing contract in Cameroon.

The company revealed that the proposed facility would provide up to US$10mln to the project operator for the NJOM-2 well, which is presently in progress. Subject to results, the financing facility could be expanded to support the next three production wells and a platform planned for the Njonji field, the company added.

Tower noted that while it has in place a farm-out agreement with OilLR Pty Ltd, which has pledged US$7.5mln of financing, the funds have yet to arrive in escrow as agreed, and the AIM-quoted company has the right to reduce OilLR’s investment to US$5mln or to terminate the agreement.

The company said it is in talks with another potential farm-in partner, and, it is considering its options with regard to the OilLR agreement.

On Thursday, Deltic Energy PLC (LON:DELT) told investors that Shell had provided new processed 3D seismic data over the Pensacola prospect, which is slated for a possible well in the second half of next year. The data delivered a robust image over the Pensacola prospect, Deltic noted, and the partners will now update their interpretation of the prospect. Earlier, on Tuesday, Deltic announced a material upgrade to gas estimates for the Selene prospect. Here, a well investment decision will take place ahead of a pencilled in drill programme for 2022.

Notably, the estimated chance of success at Selene was lifted significantly to stand at 70%, up from 39% in the previous estimate. The new resource estimate sees some 629bn cubic feet of in-place P50 gas resources, with a range set at 286bn in the P90 (the highest confidence) estimate and 1.02 trillion cubic feet in the P10 (most prospective) estimate.

Deltic noted that the upgrade is the result of a considerable amount of work including the reprocessing of existing 3D seismic data and the use of an innovative technological approach to depth conversion by a Shell and Deltic joint team.

Westmount Energy Limited (LON:WTE) shares advanced this week amid well spud news at an Exxon Mobil exploration prospect offshore Guyana. The AIM-quoted firm holds an indirect interest in the Kaieteur Block where Exxon will drill the Tanager-1 well.

In a statement, Westmount noted that the Stena Carron drillship has arrived at the Tanager-1 well site.

Tanager-1 will be drilled down to a depth of 8,000 metres and will take 90 days to complete. It is seen as a stacked reservoir prospect and has been estimated to host some 256.2mln barrels of oil (with the high-to-low case range set at 135.6mln to 451.6mln). It is estimated to have a 72% chance of success (defined as ‘aggregate Probability of Geologic Success’). It is one of multiple targets in the southern portion of the Kaieteur Block which altogether are estimated to contain around 2.1bn barrels.

i3 Energy PLC (LON:I3E) raised at least £29mln, with a further £1mln subject to regulatory approval, as it advances its proposed acquisition of assets owned by Gain Energy in Canada.

It comes after the oil and gas company last week struck a deal to concurrently sell a package of the Gain assets to a third party, Harvard Energy, for C$45mln (US$33mln) which meant the net acquisition cost was reduced to C$35mln (US$26mln). In the share placing, some 568.4mln new shares are being issued at a price of 5p. The additional placing will see the issue of 12.65mln shares, if approved.

Diversified Gas & Oil PLC (LON:DGOC) chief executive Rusty Hutson on Monday told investors that the company is well-positioned to capitalise on opportunities created in the presently challenging times. The producer, in its interim results statement, pointed out that it had some US$220mln of liquidity and a healthy balance sheet.

DGOC confirmed production at 109,000 barrels oil equivalent per day (boepd) for the month of June, with the first half rate averaging 95,100 boepd. It achieved first-half earnings (adjusted EBITDA) of US$146mln and net income was reported at US$18mln. An interim dividend was confirmed at 3.75 cents per share, up 7% on last year.

The first half performance was boosted in May with the acquisition of asset packages from EQT and Carbon Energy.