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Central Petroleum Queried On 16.4% Share Spike And High Volume

Central Petroleum (ASX: CTP) has said it is not aware of any reason for the sudden 16.4% jump in its share price to an intra-day high of A$0.064 on Friday 16 March, from a close of A$0.055 a day before.

The share price hike was accompanied by a massive increase in volume with more than 40 million shares trading hands today compared with just 2.7 million yesterday.

Central noted that a number of other ASX listed peers with unconventional acreage had also seen increased market interest.

This added interest combined with its discussions with potential farm-in partners and its large acreage position in the Northern Territory that is prospective for unconventional oil and gas could have fuelled the share spike.

Central had last month raised A$9.9 million to fund appraisal of its successful Surprise-1 oil discovery in the Amadeus Basin.

Production testing is scheduled to start in April and the company will finalise details of the 3D seismic and further drilling soon.

The company is also evaluating its options for the lifting, transportation and sale of the oil produced during the test, which could last for up to six months or more pending flow stabilisation and a possible application for a production licence.

An engineering report by RPS Energy had indicated Surprise-1 could access initial in-place oil of 0.5 and 2 million barrels with further upside likely if its investigation into the unconventional shale oil and gas potential of the Horn Valley Siltstone bears fruit.

With the Hunt Rig 3, which was originally commissioned to drill up to 3 wells, stacked on site, any appraisal wells the company decides on can be drilled without having to wait for a rig.