Ascent Announces Huermeces Dry Hole Onshore Spain

Ascent Resources, in conjunction with its 50% partner Tethys Oil AB, has completed the drilling of the Hontomin-4 well in Spain. Following the analysis of the log data, the well is now to be plugged and abandoned, with the drilling rig then returning to Italy to continue the evaluation of the Anagni-1 oil discovery announced in January.

Ascent Resources CEO, Jeremy Eng, said, "Whilst the Hontomin-4 well could have provided us with profitable incremental production because of its proximity to the Ascent operated Ayoluengo oilfield, the relatively small reserves targeted by the well minimises the impact on the value of the Company's portfolio. Elsewhere, our drilling campaign progresses; in Hungary drilling has restarted on the first of two Nyirseg wells and in Italy, the Arrone-1 exploration well is planned to be drilled immediately after the rig has completed its work on the Anagni-1 re-entry."

The Hontomin-4 well was drilled to a depth of 1,610 meters and although the target Lower Jurassic clastics and the Triassic Carniolas carbonates were present, they did not contain oil. The well was drilled into the underlying Triassic Keuper evaporites. Preliminary analysis suggests that the complexity of the faulting in the formations above the target has resulted in the lack of an adequate seal for the reservoir. The well, equally funded by Ascent and Tethys, is expected to be on budget despite delays caused by extreme weather conditions with heavy snow on the location at the end of March and the failure of drilling contractor equipment, particularly the mud pumps.

The Ayoluengo oil field is producing at an average rate of over 110 barrels per day and production enhancement programs on the field continue. In the nearby Basconcillos-H exploration permit, again in conjunction with Tethys, the planned re-entry of the Tozo 1 well, to test some 30 m of good hydrocarbon shows in the Cretaceous Purbeckian sands, has been postponed for operational reasons.

Ascent Resources has a portfolio of over 20 gas and oil projects across six countries in Europe. The projects are onshore in Italy, Switzerland, Hungary, Spain, Slovenia and offshore Netherlands. Ascent is at present drilling a program of exploration wells across its portfolio. The Company operates Spain's only onshore oilfield where production currently averages over 110 barrels of oil per day. With the stable European gas market, Ascent's portfolio favours gas over oil. With the exception of the Netherlands, all of its projects are located onshore where operating and development costs are substantially lower than they are offshore.