Tui Development Program Commences with Spudding of Pateke-3H

AWE Ltd reports that the development drilling program for the Tui Area Development has commenced. The first well in the program, Pateke-3H, spudded late last week.

The Tui Area Development drilling campaign is being undertaken on a "batch-drilling" basis, to optimize the sequencing of drilling operations and the tie-ins of flowlines to the subsea development wells. The "batch drilling" will involve the drilling of the upper sections and installing subsea wellheads and trees on at least three of the planned four wells, prior to drilling the deeper sections of the wells, including the horizontal sections within the oil reservoirs.

Following the cementing of the surface casing and the installation of the sub-sea tree, the Pateke-3H well will be temporarily suspended and the drilling rig will be relocated to allow similar activities to be completed on the Tui-2H and Tui-3H wells. Tui-2H is planned to be the first well drilled to total depth and completed for hook-up to the production facilities.

The Tui Area Development is located within PMP 38158, in the Taranaki basin, approximately 50 kilometers offshore of the west coast of the North Island of New Zealand. First oil is expected from the development by June 30, 2007, and when fully commissioned, a production rate peaking at 50,000 barrels of oil per day is anticipated.

The project remains on-time and on-budget with the remaining key risks being abnormal drilling and/or weather conditions.

Participants in PMP 38158 are AWE with 42.5%; Mitsui with 35%; Stewart Petroleum with 12.5%; Pan Pacific with 10%.

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