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Cairn Drops Mediterranean Oil-Exploration Permit Off Spain

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March 10 (Bloomberg) -- Cairn Energy Plc abandoned one of its licenses to explore for oil or gas in the Mediterranean off the Spanish port of Valencia.

The government ended the Albufera permit at the request of the explorer’s Capricorn Spain Ltd. unit, according to an order published March 7 in Spain’s Official Bulletin. An outside spokesman for Cairn in London declined to comment.

The Scottish oil company, whose offshore projects stretch from Greenland to Mauritania, retains four permits in Spain further out to sea, its website shows. The five blocks together cover an area of 3,922 square kilometers (1,515 square miles.)

Albufera was licensed in December 2010 along with adjacent blocks Benifayo and Gandia. Cairn’s Capricorn unit will keep searching for oil in those two blocks, according to the order, which didn’t elaborate on the two remaining permits.

Capricorn asked Spain for permission to abandon the Albufera license in January 2013.

To contact the reporter on this story: Todd White in Madrid at twhite2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Timothy Coulter at tcoulter@bloomberg.net Tony Barrett, John Viljoen

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