Sterling Energy has been awarded an exploration license for the Reed Bank area offshore northwest Palawan by the Philippines Department of Energy. The Reed Bank area covers 10,000 square kilometers and has potentially huge gas reserves. Sterling will initially acquire about 350 sq km of seismic data for the Reed Bank area and will also conduct a feasibility study of the Sampaguita prospect. The company will have the option to drill two conventional wells and one deepwater well. There have been two non-commercial gas/condensate discoveries and one non-commercial gas discovery in the Reed Bank. The Sampaguita discovery was made in the Kalayaan Island Group of the Reed Bank in 1976, however, it was classed as non-commercial and abandoned.