Tullow Granted Operatorship of Orwell Gas Field

Tullow Oil plc, the international oil and gas exploration, development and production company, announced that Tullow Exploration Limited, the UK North Sea Operating subsidiary of Tullow Oil plc, has been granted formal approval by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to assume the operatorship of the Orwell field in Block 50/26a in the Southern North Sea.

Tullow Exploration holds a 50% interest in this field with Texaco holding the remainder. Gas from the Orwell field is piped via the Thames production complex and landed at the Phillips operated Bacton Terminal for processing and onward transmission into the National Transmission System. Tullow's share of the gas production is not subject to any long-term contractual sales arrangements.

In conjunction with the assumption of operatorship, Tullow has also completed the acquisition of the Orwell field and the associated production license from ARCO British Limited. This means that all elements of the Southern North Sea Acquisition from BP/ARCO, originally announced on July 31, 2000 have now been completed. The operatorship of the remaining Thames Area fields, comprising the Thames, Yare, Bure and Wensum fields and the satellite Gawain and Welland fields, has today been assumed by Mobil North Sea Limited, a subsidiary of Exxon-Mobil.

Aidan Heavey, Tullow Oil plc Managing Director commented: "We are delighted to have completed on Orwell and to have concluded all aspects of Tullow's Southern North Sea acquisition from BP/ARCO. The assumption of an offshore production operatorship is a major milestone in the evolution of any oil and gas company and is a testament to the experience, professionalism and commitment of the team we have assembled. Tullow looks forward to working with its partners in the North Sea Assets with the aim of enhancing reserves and production from this area for many years to come."