Todd Petroleum to Spud Patea West-1 Well

Shell Petroleum Mining Company Ltd and Todd Petroleum Mining Company Ltd are scheduled to start drilling the Patea West-1 well in offshore Taranaki permit PEP 38737 in New Zealand. Drilling is scheduled to start in mid-June from an onshore site not far from the coast just north of the town of Patea.

Operator Shell Todd Oil Services Ltd will be using the Parker Drilling 252 rig to drill Patea West-1 from the adjacent permit PEP 38760 but will deviate the well into shallow Miocene-aged sandstones within the Patea prospect.

Todd Energy chief executive Richard Tweedie has said the Patea prospect is believed to straddle the PEP 38737, 38760 and 38719 permits and appears to be separated into eastern and western parts by a subsurface basement ridge.

The Patea West prospect is interpreted to be on the same structural closure but updip of some of Swift Energy New Zealand's Kauri wells, which have already flowed oil from the shallow Manutahi sandstones.

Mr. Tweedie said that after the Patea West well, Todd would be drilling Patea East-1 from the same drilling site, but not necessarily using the same rig.

Todd will drill this well without using STOS as operator, and has recruited its own well engineering manager/drilling manager from overseas. New Zealander Andy McGregor has participated in the drilling of several onshore Taranaki wells in recent years.

Patea East-1 is scheduled to test the shallow oil potential of the eastern part of Patea prospect, with the target zone predicted to be at a depth of about 1000-1100 meters.