Premier Oil restarts oil exploration in Guinea Bissau

15 February 2006

Bissau, Guinea Bissau, 15 Feb – British oil company Premier Oil plans to restart oil exploration in Guinea Bissau, where it holds the concession of the for the Esperança and Sinapa fields, after last year having concluded the gathering of seismic information about the country’s offshore area, Company officials said Wednesday.

Simon Lockett, chief executive of Premier, said in Bissau that included in the company’s “2006 campaign” there are “wells with great potential,” in Guinea Bissau and Vietnam, as well as in Indonesia (Macan Tutul), where recently a large gas discovery was made.

In Guinea exploration work this year is expected to include the Eirozes and Espinafre wells, in Premier’s concession area.

Premier has the concession for offshore blocs 2 (Sinapa), 4A and 5A (Esperança), in the Casamança-Bissau sub-basin, which ahs a total area of 5,840 square kilometers, with depths of between 10 and 2,000 meters.

The company also holds the concession of blocs 7B and 7C, where preliminary assessments have shown that “potential for discoveries is very large,” according to Premier.

Oil exploration in Guinea Bissau began in 1960, but the country’s instability since 1974 has led to frequent interruptions.

Companies involved in offshore drilling in Guinea since that time include Esso, Elf, Pecten, Lasmo, Sipetrol of Chile, West Oil, Sterling Energy, Benton Oil and Gas and Petrobank Energy and Resources. (macauhub)