ExxonMobil has given up the hunt for hydrocarbons on an exploration block in the highly prospective Flemish Pass basin offshore Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada, after drilling two unsuccessful wells.

The move came as Woodside Energy and Cenovus handed back four blocks to Canadian authorities, with the Australian major set to lose a deposit worth up to C$205 million (US$148.3 million) and the Calgary-based major potentially forfeiting C$26 million.

ExxonMobil’s now surrendered exploration licence (EL) 1165 lay southwest of Equinor’s big Bay du Nord project and northeast of the huge Hibernia and Hebron oilfields in the Jeanne d’Arc basin which the US giant operates.