Exxon's Cepu Block Starts Producing Limited Amount of Crude

JAKARTA (Dow Jones Newswires), December 10, 2008

Exxon Mobil Corp. said that the Cepu Block in Indonesia started producing Wednesday a "limited" amount of crude oil that is expected to rise to 20,000 barrels a day in the first half of 2009.

The U.S. company owns a 45% stake in the block, which is estimated to contain 600 million barrels of oil.

State-owned PT Pertamina holds another 45% of the equity, and several companies owned by the local governments hold the remaining 10%.

The full output of the block, located on the border of central and east Java, is expected to be 165,000 barrels/day. The block is vital to Indonesia's hopes to bring its crude output back above one million barrels/day.

Indonesia turned a net oil importer in 2003 and will cease its membership in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries next month.  

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