Sound Oil, through its subsidiary Apennine Energy, has signed a contract with Hydro Drilling International to secure a drilling rig for the Marciano-1ST well completion operation in Italy.

The company has applied to the Italian government for official approval to conduct the operation.

According to the company, it is expected that this will be given in order to commence operations in April.

The Marciano completion is likely to take approximately 10 days and will perforate two intervals with wireline log indications of gas within zones at 1283m-1288m and 1325m-1331m measured depth in the well bore.

Apennine Energy holds a 99% working interest in the Fonte San Damiano concession located in Basilicata which contains the Marciano discovery.

Sound Oil chairman and chief executive Gerry Orbell said that the company is on track to meet its operations schedule and expectations of first production this year.