Austral Pacific Says Cheal-A3X Encounters Oil & Gas Shows

Austral Pacific Energy reports that the Cheal-A3X located in New Zealand well has intersected sandstones equivalent to those which flow oil and gas in the adjacent Cheal-1 well.

Oil and gas shows have been observed over approximately a 40m (120 feet) interval of Cheal-A3X.

These appear to compare favorably with those observed over a shorter interval corresponding to the established pay sands interval in Cheal-1; and were encountered at a depth some 20m (60 feet) shallower than in Cheal-1.

The significance of these shows cannot be assessed until electric logs are run in the well, after it reaches its target depth at 1900m (6,200 feet) along hole. At the present time, the down-hole drilling assembly is being changed, in preparation for drilling ahead to the Mt Messenger target, which is expected to lie 2-300m (600 feet) below present depth of 1500m (5,000 feet) along hole.

Assuming drilling progress proceeds as expected, electric logs will be run this coming weekend. Average flows of 50 barrels of oil and 0.5 million cubic feet of gas per day were achieved from Cheal-1 during a one month production test in October/November 2003.