Australian energy company Melbana outlines plans for oil exploration efforts in Cuba by next year. File photo by Ernesto Mastracusa/EPA. July 19 (UPI) — Amendments to a work plan for Cuban oil assets open the door for drilling exploration wells by the first half of next year, Australia’s Melbana Energy said. Melbana is one of the few Western oil companies, and the only one listed on the Australian exchange, with a footprint in Cuba. The national oil company of Cuba, CUPET, extended its contract last year for early exploration efforts in Block 9 by eight months to November 2017. At Melbana’s request, the Cuban company amended the work program again because of data assessments. “The amended Block 9 production sharing contract work program approved by CUPET is now aligned with Melbana’s stated ambition to accelerate drilling of up to two exploration wells in the highly prospective Block 9,” CEO […]