Plectrum Garners Bremer Exploration Permits

Plectrum Petroleum PLC said that it has been granted Petroleum Exploration Permits for two large frontier areas (WA-379-P and WA-380-P) within the Bremer Sub-basin, offshore Western Australia. The awards were made on 9 August 2006 by the Commonwealth-Western Australian Joint Authority as part of the 2005 competitive bid round of the Australian Government Release of Offshore Exploration Areas.

The company has been granted a 100% working interest and Operatorship of both Exploration Permits. These permits are very large at over 9000 square kilometers each (greater than one UKCS Quad each).

Recent work on the petroleum prospectivity of the Exploration Permits (Bradshaw, 2005*) has demonstrated the potential for discovery of 500 million barrel oil accumulations. The work has been based on the study of a newly acquired grid of 2D seismic data tied to dredge samples recovered from the seabed.

Plectrum has committed to conduct minimum guaranteed work programs in the first three years and indicated secondary work programs for years four to six. In most circumstances, permits can be renewed after the initial six-year term for a further two terms of five years duration each. As part of the guaranteed minimum work program for each area, Plectrum has committed to acquire an infill grid of new 2D seismic data, seabed gravity coring and feasibility studies to determine whether controlled-source electromagnetic (CSEM) and marine magneto-telluric (MMT) remote sensing technologies can be successfully employed as a risk reduction tool.

Commenting on the award, Mike Whyatt, Plectrum Petroleum's Executive Chairman, said: "This award, together with our recently announced acquisition in Tunisia, demonstrates our ability to significantly grow our portfolio. Australia has attractive fiscal terms and in recent years has had a one in four offshore exploration success rate, with oil discoveries outnumbering gas.

"Within the Bremer Sub-basin we recognize a wide variety of fault block, faulted anticline and stratigraphic trapping possibilities that demonstrate the potential for commercially viable hydrocarbon discoveries. Port, power generation and hydrocarbon export facilities are available at nearest landfall and the area has relative proximity to major Australian energy markets. We look forward to working with the Australian government as we progress our work program in this exciting new basin."

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