PNG LNG gas hunt to extend north

ExxonMobil will acquire 20% of petroleum prospecting licence 260 for $US7million ($A6.86 million) off Eaglewood Energy. The licence is directly north of the Hides field in Petroleum Development Licence 1 in the southern highlands of Papua New Guinea.
PNG LNG gas hunt to extend north PNG LNG gas hunt to extend north PNG LNG gas hunt to extend north PNG LNG gas hunt to extend north PNG LNG gas hunt to extend north

The deal will give Toronto-listed Eaglewood $2.1 million on execution of the sales agreement and another $4.9 million when Exxon's PNG subsidiary Esso Highlands has its interest registered on the licence - expected by year end.

Esso also has an option to acquire Eaglewood's remaining 10% stake of PPL 260 for $3.5 million - which is not expected to expire until the September quarter of 2012.

This licence covers 1.6 million acres over the difficult terrain of the Papuan Fold Belt and key PNG LNG project partner Oil Search owned half of it by the end of September.

Eaglewood intends to focus on exploration in PPL 259 in PNG's Western Province, where the Ubuntu-1 gas condensate discovery was made in February, which contains at least 10 metres of net gas-bearing Elevala sandstone.

Eaglewood chief executive officer Brad Hurtubise said the sales agreement gave the company an opportunity to monetise a licence where it is no longer active, and provides capital to re-deploy in to PPL 259.

He said Eaglewood was acquiring seismic and has an aggressive 2012 program in this licence, with a second well expected in the second half of 2012.

The Ubuntu-1 well was a joint venture between Eaglewood (40%) and Talisman Energy, but Eaglewood owns 90% of the rest of PPL 259.

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