This is part of New Zealand's largest petroleum exploration company's growing exploration effort — now largely separate from long-time partner Shell.
Hilary Dussing, Todd Petroleum Mining's general manager of exploration and production, said Todd planned to drill the Matariki-1 exploration well south-east of the Maari oil field in the company's 100%-owned PEP 38494.
She said Matariki-1, like Maari in which Todd was a partner, would have the Moki sands as the primary objective and could contain reserves in excess of 100 mln bbls of oil.
Todd was currently talking to partners interested in farming into the Matariki prospect.
A well, Karewa-2, is also planned later next year to appraise the original PEP 38602 Karewa discovery about 50 km west of Kawhia Harbour. Todd has carried out 2D and 3D seismic surveys over Karewa and two other permits which Todd holds immediately to the south, PEP 38486 and PEP 38487.
Todd plans to drill the two wells using the Ensco 107 jack-up rig which is coming to New Zealand from Vietnam next year to drill the development wells for the Maari oil field and Kupe gas field.
Todd is also a 15% partner in a previously announced offshore Taranaki well, the AWE-operated West Cape-1 in PEP 38481 west of the Tui fields, which is to be drilled in mid-2007 by the Ocean Patriot rig.
Ms Dussing said that onshore Todd is also to drill possibly two wells in its Mangahewa gas field mining permit. The Mangahewa-3 appraisal well aimed to produce more gas from the field which was currently producing from one well Mangahewa-2 from only one of a number of levels possible from the Kapuni Group sands. The Mangahewa permit is under appraised and could contain up to 250 PJ of gas reserves yet to be developed.
The Mangahewa-3 well would be drilled in November this year using the Parker 246 rig back-to-back with Todd's Te Kiri-2 exploration well which is currently drilling ahead in its PEP 38749 permit west of Mt Taranaki.
Todd plans to drill Mangahewa 4 later in 2007 after evaluating the results of the #3 well.
Te Kiri-2, located over 10 km north of the coastal town of Opunake, is targeting objectives in both the Moki and Kapuni sands.
Todd is also a partner in the 48.8 million barrel Maari oil field development, scheduled to be producing oil by early 2008 as well as the Pohokura gas-condensate field which recently began commercial production.
Ms Dussing, an American, joined Todd Energy in December 2005 as its General Manager of the oil and gas business unit. She previously worked for the Royal Dutch Shell Group in The Netherlands where she was involved with new business development in Russia and on Sakhalin Island, and in Gabon, West Africa as their Technical and Operations Manager. Prior to her overseas postings with Shell, she held a variety of positions in exploration, production and finance for North American independent oil and gas companies.
Todd's exploration and production, which includes geoscientists, engineers, operations and support is now 42 strong, based largely in Todd Energy's New Plymouth and Wellington offices, with the operations base being at the McKee production office.
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