Aminex Ready to Begin Drilling Operations in Tanzania

Aminex has commenced drilling operations offshore Tanzania from a location onshore Nyuni Island. Dafora's F200 rig, contracted for drilling operations, has now been shipped from Romania and successfully unloaded on Nyuni Island, offshore Tanzania, where it is currently being rigged up.

Drilling operations will commence imminently and the first well, Nyuni #1, is estimated to take approximately 3 months to reach total depth of around 3010 meters subsea. The main objective of the well is to test the hydrocarbon potential of the Lower Cretaceous sandstones below 2350 meters subsea. After the Nyuni #1 well is finished the rig will be moved to the nearby Okuza Island where a second well, Okuza #1, will be drilled to test a separate structure.

The 2,600 square kilometer Nyuni license, operated by Aminex's 100% subsidiary Ndovu Resources Ltd., is adjacent to the Songo Songo gas field which is due to produce gas in 2004 through a new, internationally financed, common-user pipeline system, currently under construction. In the event of a gas discovery, capacity in this pipeline will be available to Aminex and partners.

Aminex also holds a technical evaluation license for the onshore Ruvuma concession in southern Tanzania and expects to complete a Production Sharing Agreement for this acreage shortly.

Aminex Chief Executive Brian Hall commented yesterday: 'The start of drilling operations will be a significant moment for Aminex and a milestone in the exploration of offshore Tanzania which we consider to be an emerging oil and gas province with great potential.'