Inpex, Apache Increase Interest in Offshore Australian Assets

Inpex Corporation announced that, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Inpex Alpha, Ltd., it has agreed to acquire a 18.999% interest in the WA-35-L (excluding the Van Gogh Defined Area) and a 23.7495% interest in the WA-255-P block 1081 from BHP Billiton, both of which are located offshore Western Australia.

For the WA-35-L (excluding the Van Gogh Defined Area), the acquisition will increase the interest for Inpex from 28.500% to 47.499% and for Apache Northwest Pty. Ltd. (Apache) from 31.501% to 52.501% . For the WA-255-P block 1081, this acquisition will bring about ownership of a 23.7495% interest for Inpex and a 26.2505% interest for Apache (operator) with the remaining 50.0000% currently held by Woodside Energy Limited.

The WA-35-L (excluding the Van Gogh Defined Area) covers both the Novara structure and the Coniston structure, in which oil was discovered by the Novara-1 well drilled in 1982 and by the Coniston-1 well drilled in 2000, respectively. The WA-255- P block 1081 covers the part of the Coniston structure. Further appraisal works including the drilling of appraisal wells are planned.

Depending on the results of such appraisal works, some synergy effects through the sharing of the production facilities with the Van Gogh Oil Field may be expected. The Van Gogh Oil Field is located in the Van Gogh Defined Area in the WA-35-L and is anticipated to start oil production in May 2009. The Van Gogh Defined Area is owned by Inpex (47.499%) and Apache (52.501%).

Inpex Alpha, Ltd. was established in 1989, and has been carrying out crude oil and gas production in the Griffin Fields in the WA-10-L. It has also conducting active exploration and production activities in Australian territorial waters, which include the Van Gogh Oil Field development and the Ravensworth Oil Field development.