The deal with Ukrainian state-owned National Joint Stock Company Nak Nadra Ukrayny and Cadogan Petroleum will see Eni assume operatorship of WestGasInvest which currently holds subsoil rights to nine unconventional shale gas license areas in the Lviv Basin of Ukraine, spanning 3,800 km2.

The Lviv Basin has been identified as one of the most potential basins in Europe for the exploration of shale gas.

Eni said the acquisition will enable it to strengthen its unconventional oil and gas portfolio in Ukraine.

The deal deepens the company’s presence in Ukraine following its stake in the Zagoryanska and Pokroskoe licenses in Dniepr-Donetz Basin since 2011 that it operates with Cadogan.