Shell Spuds First Appraisal Well in North Field

Qatar Shell GTL Ltd reports that on February 14th they spudded their first appraisal well in the giant North Field for the $5 billion, 140 thousand barrels per day integrated gas to liquids project.

The appraisal drilling campaign will comprise drilling of two wells in the North Field. The wells will determine the reservoir properties and structure as well as validate the composition of the gas in the area of the North Field provisionally allocated to the project.

Andy Brown Qatar Shell GTL Ltd General Manager and Project Director said: "We are delighted to have made so much progress so quickly". He added: "This milestone has been reached less than 4 months after the Qatar Petroleum/Shell Gas to Liquids Heads of Agreement (HOA) was signed on 20 October 2003. It is a testament to the excellent co-operation we have enjoyed with Qatar Petroleum that we have been able to reach this milestone so quickly".

The wells are being drilled by the Ensco 96 jackup rig.