Monrovia, Liberia — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 13 July 2011 – Oil drilling giant Chevron Corporation has announced that it is expecting to start drilling its first deepwater well off the coast of Liberia in its three deepwater concessions in the fourth quarter of this year.

The Liberian government last year approved its investment in the blocs off the West African country’s coast, giving it a 70% interest in deepwater blocks LB-11, LB-12 and LB-14, more than 160km south of the Liberian capital.

“We recently secured the drill ship and expect to begin drilling Chevron’s first deepwater exploration well in the fourth quarter of this year,” Chevron CEO John Watson said in a statement released here. “If our exploration programme is successful, we look forward to working with you to bring Liberia’s resources to the world energy market,” he added.

Liberia is slowly recovering from nearly 15 years of conflict that ended in 2003. Prospects for tapping into oil were apparently boosted last year when a consortium led by Anadarko Petroleum Corp made a find in Sierra Leone, near Liberia’s border.

Elsewhere on the African continent, Chevron has exploration and production businesses in Angola, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria and the Republic of the Congo.