Murphy Acquires Additional Acreage in Malaysia

Murphy Oil Corporation is pleased to announce that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Murphy Sabah Oil Company, Ltd. ("Murphy Sabah"), has completed a Farm-In Agreement to acquire Esso Exploration & Production Sabah Limited's entire 80-percent interest in Block H offshore Sabah, Malaysia. Esso Exploration & Production Sabah is a subsidiary of ExxonMobil Corporation.

With this acquisition, Murphy Sabah also takes over operatorship of the block, in which the remaining 20-percent equity is owned by PETRONAS Carigali Sdn Bhd, an exploration and production arm of PETRONAS, Malaysia's state-owned oil and gas corporation.

Block H, located in Malaysia's deepwater area, lies contiguous with Block K, which is also held by Murphy Sabah and PETRONAS Carigali. Block H is adjacent to Block G, where Sabah Shell Petroleum Company Limited recently announced a deepwater discovery.

Claiborne P. Deming, Murphy's President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, "The combination of Blocks K and H gives Murphy Sabah access to over 6.4 million undrilled acres in one of the most promising deepwater turbiditic margin plays in the world. Our first objective will be to supplement the existing 2-D seismic data on Block H with a phased 3-D program that will begin in the second quarter of 2001, followed by a drilling program commencing later in the year.

The addition of Block H to our existing portfolio along with our recent oil discovery in West Patricia on Block SK 309 offshore Sarawak, is quickly making Malaysia a core area of upsteam activity."


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