PTTEP Awarded Block 44 in Oman

PTTEP has signed an Exploration & Production Sharing Agreement with the Sultanate of Oman's Ministry of Oil and Gas for 100% interest in the onshore exploration Block 44.

Block 44 covers approximately 1,162 square kilometers. It is located about 300 kilometers west from Muscat, the capital of Oman, and near an oil field called Safah which is currently producing approximately 30,000-40,000 barrels per day. The committed exploration program consists of 2D seismic survey and technical study in the 1st and 2nd year, and an exploration well in the 3rd year. PTTEP plan to spend at least US $9 million as financial commitment during this exploration period.

Dr. Chitrapongse Kwangsukstith, President of PTTEP, said, "With 17 years of petroleum exploration and production experience, PTTEP is now a key producer in Thailand with successful investment in neighboring countries such as Myanmar, Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia. While we can enjoy the near and medium term growth from these domestic and regional investments, the Company have to consider other opportunities for the longer term. The oil rich Middle East region has always been on the top list of E&P companies. Block 44, not only has good petroleum potential, but also provides us the opportunity to work in different environment and enable us to capture future opportunities in that region.

"Over the past 2 years, we have studied the E&P activities in Oman and developed a close and cooperative relationship with the Ministry of Oil and Gas. Regional study was performed and Block 44 was identified as the best available prospect for exploration. We are very excited to be selected as the Operator and will mobilize our experienced staffs to work in PTTEP ME Operating Office in Muscat soon. We wish to express our heart felt thanks and appreciation to Ministry of Oil and Gas, Sultanate of Oman and pledge to work closely with the Ministry in years to come." said Dr. Chitrapongse Kwangsukstith.

In 2001, Oman was the second largest source of crude oil for Thailand and accounted for 22% of the country's imported crude bill.