OMV New Zealand has joined a consortium that is exploring near the Maari field.
The Austrian-based firm will take a 30% interest in a permit area off the Taranaki coast. It joins Todd Exploration, Horizon Oil and Cue Taranaki.
OMV will become the operator for the licence by March next year.
As part of the deal, OMV will pay for an exploration well in the Whio prospect which is close to the Maari permit border.