Horizon withdraws from Thailand operations

In a bid to reduce costs, Horizon Oil has withdrawn from its operations offshore Thailand and has transferred its interests in five blocks in the Gulf of Thailand to joint venture partner Pearl Energy.

Feb 14th, 2009

Rick Wilkinson
OGJ Correspondent

MELBOURNE, Feb. 14 -- In a bid to reduce costs, Horizon Oil Ltd., Sydney, has withdrawn from its operations offshore Thailand and has transferred its interests in five blocks in the Gulf of Thailand to joint venture partner Pearl Energy Ltd.

The transferrd interests are for Blocks G1/48, G3/48, G6/48, G10/48, and G11/48. Through the transaction Horizon eliminates liability to a committed $22-30 million offshore drilling program in 2009.

Contributing to the reasons for the company's decision to exit Thailand was an expected 6-month delay in cash flow from its share in the Maari oil field development off New Zealand, Horizon said. The current global economic downturn and falling oil prices also played factors in the company's decision.

Maari is now expected on stream in late February or early March. Even so, Horizon says it has to focus on its development and predevelopment projects where proven and probable reserves already exist. There will be time to look to exploration for growth when market conditions and oil prices improve.

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