Exploration/Development news briefs, Aug. 28

AMG Oil ... Mobil Exploration & Producing Peru ... Perupetro ... Exxon ... Elf Petroleum ... American International Petroleum ... American International Kazakhstan � Woodside � BP Developments (Australia) � Chevron Asiatic � Shell Development (Australia) � BHP Petroleum (North West Shelf)

AMG Oil Ltd. has acquired funding for the first phase of its upcoming drilling program in New Zealand's Canterbury basin. A single private investor has acquired a block of 400,000 units at $2.25/unit, raising $900,000 in working capital. Each unit consists of one common share and one share purchase warrant to acquire an additional share at $2.25 for a period of up to 2 years. These shares are subject to a 1-year holding period before any shares can be resold. The funds raised by this share issuance will be used towards the cost of drilling the Ealing-1 and Arcadia-1 exploration wells. AMG is currently in negotiations with both the industry and the financial community with a view to raise an additional $1 million, which is the approximate balance of funds needed to complete the drilling program. Drilling operations are expected to begin by the end of September.

Mobil Exploration & Producing Peru Inc., the operator since March 1996 in Peru�s Madre de Dios basin�s Block 78, gave 30 days' notice on Aug. 26 that it will release the block to Perupetro SA, the state oil regulatory body. Interests in the block were Mobil, 33.4%; Exxon Corp., which has since merged with Mobil Corp., 33.3%; and Elf Petroleum, now part of TotalFinaElf SA, 33.3%. Jorge Chamot, the energy and mines minister, said that, although Mobil had made a gas discovery last year, the companies decided the find was not commercial. He added that the block's boundaries will be redrawn in order to keep the Candamo gas find and that ecologically sensitive areas will be transferred to the Candamo National Park. ExxonMobil Corp. said it remains committed to Peru and its downstream operations there and is interested in future upstream opportunities that meet its business objectives.

American International Petroleum Corp. (AIPC), New York, last Thursday said its wholly owned subsidiary American International Kazakhstan (AIPK) has received the needed permits from Kazakhstan authorities to re-enter the Begesh No. 1 oil well on License 953 in southwestern Kazakhstan. The main target of re-entry of the Begesh No.1 well is the Upper Jurassic interval, which has not been tested before on the 12,000-acre Begesh structure. The Kazak authorities also approved the Begesh technical work program and the transfer of the well to AIPK. AIPC owns a 70% working interest in the 4.7 million-acre exploration license. AIPC anticipates operations on Begesh No.1 to begin in September.

Woodside Petroleum Ltd., operator of the WA-33-P joint venture off Western Australia, said the Brecknock South-1 exploration well was drilled to total depth of 4,008 m. Wireline logs show the well found a 167-m gross hydrocarbon column over a single interval in the primary reservoir objective, said the company. The partners in the block will remap the Brecknock and Brecknock South fields. Brecknock South-1 is in the Browse basin 20 km south of the 1979 Brecknock-1 well. Water depth is 420 m. Woodside holds 50% in WA-33-P; BP Developments (Australia) Pty. Ltd., 16.7%; Chevron Asiatic Ltd., 16.7%; Shell Development (Australia) Pty. Ltd. Australia, 8.3%; and BHP Petroleum (North West Shelf) Pty. Ltd., 8.3%.

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