TAG Oil Ltd., in a 50/50 Joint Venture with partner Austral Pacific Energy Ltd., has acquired all the onshore New Zealand assets of Australian-based Tap Oil Limited. The acquisition has further increased TAG's working interest in three of eight existing TAG permits within the onshore Taranaki, as well as adding strategic new acreage in six additional onshore permits. Drilling and completion inventory was also acquired by the Joint Venture. All new lands are exploration permits with the exception of PMP 38153, a production permit known as the Kahili Mining License.
According to Drew Cadenhead, CEO of TAG Oil: "The lands acquired from Tap are contiguous with our existing focus in the production fairway of onshore Taranaki. We're happy to increase our interest in existing projects like our SuppleJack gas/condensate project. Since Christmas, we have more than doubled our net acreage in this key area from 30,000 acres to 66,000 acres."
"We are at a much higher working interest in our 3-D seismically defined Waitoriki deep gas prospect scheduled to be drilled later this year, and we've added a number of new deep gas prospects, including an upcoming well within the Kahili Mining License. In 2002, Austral and its JV partners made an exciting discovery with the Kahili-1 well which flowed significant quantities of gas, but once put into full time production, it unexpectedly stopped producing. Newly acquired seismic has led to an updip location planned for later this year. NGC, a major gas infrastructure company in New Zealand built a production facility on this Permit for the Kahili-1 well, which now sits idle and will provide immediate market access for any new discoveries," Mr. Cadenhead concluded.
Completion of the Tap acquisition is subject to MED approval.
TAG Oil Ltd. is an independent Canadian oil and gas exploration company with a well-balanced portfolio of assets in and around the Canterbury and Taranaki basins of New Zealand. This regional focus supports the Company's mandate to explore in countries with low political risk and low government taxation, through the establishment of a portfolio of both high risk/high reward exploration projects and low risk/moderate reward acreage in producing basins. With exploration permits totaling 4,133,576 gross acres (net 1,535,935) TAG Oil is one of the largest holders of prospective acreage in New Zealand.
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