Premier Oil Promotes Mike Welton to Chairman

Premier announces that Mike Welton, non-executive director since June 1 this year, has been appointed to succeed Sir David John as Non-Executive Chairman of the Company. Sir David, who has served as Chairman for 11 years, will retire effective October 15, 2009. Welton was previously Chief Executive of Balfour Beatty plc.

Simon Lockett, Chief Executive Officer, commented, "Sir David has been an outstanding chairman over the last 11 years, guiding the company through one of the most successful periods in its history. He will be a hard act to follow, but I am sure that Mike will be a worthy successor and I am confident that we will work successfully together on the next phase of Premier's growth."

Mike Welton was appointed Chairman of Southern Water Services in January 2008 and also sits on the advisory board of Montrose Associates. He is also a director of Morrison Utility Services and High Speed Two. Welton was previously Chairman of Hanson plc, the Turkish/British Business Council and the UK Government’s Railway Sector Advisory Group. He has also held the position of Chief Executive of the international engineering construction and services group Balfour Beatty plc.

Mike is a chartered civil engineer and Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Institution of Civil Engineers.