CNOOC Plans More Drilling in East China Sea in 2002

CNOOC Ltd. plans to drill four to six wildcat wells in the Xihu Tough in the East China Sea early in 2002. CNOOC Ltd. will inject US$200 million into exploration in the East China Sea next year, as part of a total budget of US$1.5 billion. CNOOC Ltd. will be the operator for wildcat well drillings at Xihu. The company's parent, China National Offshore Oil Corp., holds a 50% interest in the Xihu Trough. CNOOC Ltd. has agreed to buy the stake from its parent for US$45 million.

CNOOC and Sinopec Corp., which will hold the remaining stakes, are in talks with Shell and Unocal Corp. to form a joint venture to jointly engage in oil and gas exploration and production in the East China Sea.