Shell Awarded Two Permits Offshore Northwest Australia

Shell has secured two exploration permit areas off the northwest coast of Australia.

The first, gazettal block AC/P41, builds on Shell's operating activities in the Eastern Browse Basin. Shell will be Operator and holds 50% equity, with Nexus Energy Ltd having the other 50%. AC/P41 is 200km off the Kimberley coast in the northern part of the Browse Basin and covers about 1,900 square kilometers.

The work program for this block includes geological studies of the area, drilling of exploration wells and acquisition of 3-D seismic data. The second permit, W06-12 in the Greater Gorgon area, was secured in partnership with Chevron (50% and Operator), with Shell holding 25% share and ExxonMobil (25%). The W06-12 permit area in the Carnarvon Basin covers about 3,100 square kilometers and lies about 100km off the coast of Western Australia.

Shell Development (Australia) Chief Operating Officer Chris Gunner said: "Australia is an important part of our regional and global growth aspirations for gas, and will help us sustain our leading LNG position around the world. "The AC/P41 block strengthens our position around the Crux asset and our partnership with Nexus. We have a joint goal of commercializing what looks to be an attractive gas resource,"

Shell's Vice President Exploration for the Asia Pacific Region, Wouter Hoogeveen, said: "Our bids for AC/P41 and W06-12 and Shell's other exploration activities off the Northern Territory and Western Australia reflect the substantial potential we see on these permits. We look forward to moving forward with our evaluation." As well as a 34% shareholding in Woodside, it has a 16% stake in the North West Shelf joint venture, 25% of Gorgon and 26% of the Greater Sunrise fields.

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