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Carnarvon Petroleum, the prodigy which made one of Australia’s largest oil discoveries in July, says it wants to start drilling in another prospect in the Timor Sea early next year.

The oil junior (ASX:CVN) is surveilling a field known as “Buffalo” for likely sites for a first well, expected to the drilled between January and March.

It’s also looking for locations for a platform and pipeline to attach a floating production storage and offloading vessel (FPSO), the vessel which will hold and process any oil and gas.

Carnarvon was awarded the acreage in May 2016 for a six-year period.

It was originally developed by BHP in 1996 and achieved flow rates of 50,000 barrels of oil a day.

A maritime treaty between Australia and East Timor in March opened the door for Carnarvon to green light up to $US150 million ($212m) worth of drilling.

“The Treaty means the Buffalo oil field will be completely within Timor-Leste jurisdiction, with Carnarvon already establishing an office in Dili, appointing a specialist Timor-Leste advisor and initiating a series of meetings with the Timor-Leste government agency Autoridade Nacional do Petróleo e Minerais (ANPM),” the company said in May.

Carnarvon Petroleum shares (ASX:CVN) over the past year
Carnarvon Petroleum shares (ASX:CVN) over the past year

“The government meetings to date have demonstrated that the parties are aligned in wanting to achieve first oil as soon as practicable.”

Carnarvon rose to fame with the Phoenix discovery on the North West Shelf in July, where they found light oil in a well with a net pay thickness — the size of the area containing oil that can be extracted — of 79.6 metres.

Carnarvon shares ticked up 1.2 per cent on the news to 42c.