Unocal Successfully Starts Thai Oil Expansion Project

Unocal said that its Unocal Thailand Limited subsidiary has successfully started up the second oil central processing platform (CPP) at the Platong operating area in the Gulf of Thailand. The Platong Oil CPP 2 was brought online safely and on schedule marking a major milestone for the project's goal of significantly increasing Unocal's current crude oil production in the Gulf of Thailand by the third quarter 2005.

"With the timely platform installation and successful start up on schedule, we are on track to achieve our target of ramping up gross crude oil production to 40,000 barrels per day (b/d) by the third quarter this year, from the current level of 24,000 b/d gross," said Tara Tiradnakorn, Unocal Thailand president. "This production increase significantly adds to Thailand's total indigenous crude oil output and helps the Kingdom reduce its dependence on oil imports."

Unocal Thailand's initial crude oil production from the first phase of the Thai Oil development started at some 3,000 barrels (gross) in July 2001. Oil production from five operating areas -- Kaphong, Plamuk, Platong, Surat and Yala -- has continued to increase and cumulative production reached 20 million barrels (gross) in January 2005.

The Platong Oil CPP2 is the largest central processing platform ever constructed in Thailand. The CPP was successfully installed at the Platong complex in March after the 13-month construction at CUEL's Laemchabang fabrication yard on Thailand's eastern seaboard.

"The Platong crude oil development not only helps the country meet its rising energy demand but also demonstrates Unocal Thailand's world-class performance in delivering on commitments to the Kingdom of Thailand," said Stephen Green, Unocal's vice president for International Energy Operations. "The 22-month timeframe from project sanction to production startup is another example of the extraordinary capabilities of our Unocal Thailand team."

The Thai oil expansion project is the last of the five major Unocal development projects that were slated to begin production in 2005. So far this year, Unocal has participated in new production from the Mad Dog (Unocal, 15.6% working interest) and K2 (Unocal, 12.5% W.I.) fields in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, the Moulavi Bazar gas field (Unocal, 100% W.I.) in Bangladesh, and the Central Azeri crude oil export project (Unocal, 10.3% W.I.) in the Caspian Sea.

So far in 2005, Unocal Thailand's gross daily production (Unocal, average 64% W.I.) has averaged approximately 1.280 billion cubic feet of natural gas, 42,000 barrels of condensate, and 24,000 barrels of crude oil.

Unocal Thailand operates 16 operating areas in the Gulf of Thailand on behalf of Mitsui Oil Exploration Co., Ltd., PTT Exploration and Production Public Company Limited, and Amerada Hess (Thailand), Ltd.