Tullow Oil Says Mputa-1 Encounters Oil Shows

Tullow Oil says that the Mputa-1 exploration well in Uganda has encountered oil shows over two intervals within the deeper objective and wireline logs have indicated that these intervals are hydrocarbon bearing. A wireline pressure and sampling program has commenced and, as of 16 January, oil samples have been recovered from the first such interval, a sand of approximately 10 metres gross thickness at a depth of 965 metres. The sampling program is continuing and will include the lower interval where evidence of hydrocarbons has also been encountered.

In accordance with the planned drilling program for Block 2, the well will be plugged and abandoned upon completion of the wireline sampling program; any production testing of Mputa-1 will be considered in conjunction with future drilling. The rig will then move to the Waraga-1 location approximately 20 km to the north east of Mputa-1.

Mputa-1 targeted multiple objectives on a structural prospect defined by the 2005 seismic survey in an area with surface oil seeps. The results of the Mputa-1 discovery provide encouragement for further evaluation of the surrounding area where a number of other prospects and leads have been identified. Further work will be required before any comment can be made on the size or commercial significance of the potential resource.

Commenting today, Aidan Heavey, Chief Executive of Tullow said:

"The initial results of the Mputa-1 well are very significant in that they prove the existence of a working petroleum system in the Albertine Basin where Tullow has a 50% equity interest throughout. While it is too early to determine the size or potential commerciality of Mputa-1, the results significantly reduce the risk of the prospects mapped in Blocks 2 and 3A. We now look forward to the drilling of the Waraga-1 well in Block 2 and the Kingfisher prospect in Block 3A".