Hopes for gas field off South Island

NZ Oil and Gas is confident Labour will continue existing gas exploration permits.
NZ Oil and Gas is confident Labour will continue existing gas exploration permits. Photo credit: Getty

There are hopes gas may be discovered off the South Island's east coast - leading to major benefits for the economy.

New Zealand Oil and Gas is prospecting the Barque field, about 80 kilometres out from Oamaru.

Chief executive Andrew Jeffries says there is a one in five chance of finding gas in the area and the discovery of gas would grow our GDP, and create many new jobs.

New Zealand Oil and Gas is confident the new Government will continue existing permits for gas exploration. Mr Jeffries says while the green energy space is growing, traditional energy is still vital.

"Fantastic that we're transitioning, fantastic that we're looking to care for the world, but we can do that and we look for hydrocarbons here in New Zealand as well," he says.

However he says no drilling would take place until a partner can be found to explore the area.

"The next stage is to bring partners in and to actually drill a well, but we need to be able to discuss what you would do with the gas and what sort of market there is," he says.

Newshub.