Scottish oil explorer Cairn Energy said yesterday it planned to drill up to four wells offshore Greenland this year.
The company added that there were between 10 and 12 possible well locations where it might drill and it would not finalise its plans until May.
Cairn also said a deal to sell a stake in its Indian unit was likely to conclude by April 15, allowing it to focus on Arctic exploration.
Its 2011 plans for Greenland are in line with its first exploration campaign in the area last year.
Edinburgh-based Cairn was the first company to drill offshore Greenland in many years when it started exploration work on the Alpha prospect about 108 miles from Disko Island.
Its T8-1 well in the Baffin Sea between Greenland and Canada encountered small quantities of gas, signalling the potential for oil.
Last year’s drilling programme failed to make a commercially significant oil discovery, however, and the company’s activities in the region were hindered by environmental campaigners.
Greenpeace protesters obstructed its operations, claiming that the company’s plans threatened the fragile Arctic environment.
Greenland has been attracting strong interest from oil firms lately, despite the area having no tradition in oil production and harsh conditions for exploration.
The world’s thirst for oil has led the industry to revisit the Arctic waters for the first time since the 1970s, when exploration was unsuccessful.
Cairn is awaiting approval from the Indian government to sell a majority stake in Cairn India to mining and giant Vedanta Resources for up to £6billion.
The April date eyed for the deal’s conclusion is later than the current guidance of March given by India’s oil minister.
It is also a significant delay to the end-2010 date for completion given by Cairn Energy when it announced the deal last August.
Chief executive Sir Bill Gammell said: “Cairn continues to work with the government of India in a consensual manner to secure the necessary consents and approvals for completion of the Vedanta transaction.”