Simpson Field Brought On Stream

Tap Oil Limited reports that the Simpson oil field in the Carnarvon Basin was brought into production on November 24, 2001. Initial start up has only been from the Simpson-3H horizontal production well at this stage. This well is presently producing at a stabilized rate of around 14,000 bbls/d, considerably better than estimated production of 8,000 bbls/d. The other two production wells accessing the Simpson oil field, Simpson-1 and Tanami-4, are expected to be brought into production this week at a (incremental to Simpson-3H) rate of around 5,000 bbls/d resulting in a combined rate of 19,000 bpd. However, planned total production from the three Simpson development wells, Simpson-3H, Simpson-1 and Tanami-4 will be limited by temporary processing capacity constraints on Varanus Island to around 17,000 bbls/d until later this year. From early next year, Simpson production will increase total liquids production from the Harriet fields to around 20-25,000 bpd (subject to usual production decline curves) until the South Plato and Gibson oil fields, (discovered earlier this year 4 kms to the south west of Simpson) are brought on stream around May 2002, where a further increase of around 10,000 bbls/d is expected.

The Simpson oil field is produced via two remotely controlled mini platforms, Simpson A and B with a pipeline bundle back to Varanus Island production infrastructure.

The development has pipeline capacity for up to 50,000 bbls/d. This is designed to accommodate planned future production from the Gibson and South Plato oil fields and hopefully other discoveries in the area. The development was completed at a total cost of around A$30 million being moderately over budget essentially due to the introduction of extra precautionary platform design and pipe lay techniques.

Substantial enhancements have recently been made to the Varanus Island oil and gas processing facilities in anticipation of increased through-puts of both oil and gas. Enhancements include upgrading the liquids handling capacity to 100,000 bpd (in progress), a new state of the art control building, increased power supply, with plans to increase the HJV's gas processing capacity early next year.

Numerous other prospects in this area are on the drilling schedule for early 2002, commencing with Victoria-1 in January. Harriet Joint Venture Participants Participants are: Tap Oil Limited with a 12.2229% interest; Apache Energy Limited as operator with a 68.5% interest and Kufpec Australia with the remaining 19.2771%.