Talisman buys interest in Texaco North Sea fields

Talisman Energy Inc. said Tuesday that its Talisman Energy (UK) Ltd. subsidiary is acquiring from Texaco Inc. interests in the Tartan field and related fields in the North Sea. Talisman will acquire the 100% interest in Blocks 14/20a and 15/16a of Tartan and Block 14/20bF-1 of the related Highlander and Petronella subsea satellite fields. The company also requisitioned interests in adjacent exploration acreage for an undisclosed amount.


Talisman Energy Inc., Calgary, said Tuesday that its Talisman Energy (UK) Ltd. subsidiary is acquiring from Texaco Inc. interests in the Tartan field and related fields in the North Sea.

Talisman will acquire the 100% interest in Blocks 14/20a and 15/16a of Tartan, as well as Block 14/20bF-1 of the related Highlander and Petronella subsea satellite fields. The company also requisitioned interests in adjacent exploration acreage for an undisclosed amount.

The blocks are between Piper and Claymore fields, where Talisman recently procured other major interests.

Talisman on Monday assumed operatorship of Tartan and the satellite fields. Production from the three-field complex is expected to reach 11,000 b/d by midyear. It will be exported via Claymore to the Flotta Oil terminal.

Proven and probable reserves are estimated at 24 million bbl, with field abandonment forecast for 2008. Abandonment of the Tartan and Petronella fields will probably be delayed, however, as reserves for both fields are expected to increase to more than 40 million bbl. The feasibility of developing the Lowlander discovery on Block 14/20a will also be assessed.

The acquisition builds on Talisman's newly created core area in the Central North Sea, "with obvious synergy with the recently completed FRA [Fourth Round Assets] transactions," said Jim Buckee, Talisman's president and CEO. "The Tartan platform provides further tie-back opportunities from a number of small discoveries and prospects in the surrounding acreage, consistent with our proven strategy."

The transaction is set to close in third quarter 2000, pending UK government approval.

The Fourth Round Assets encompass the Claymore, Piper, Saltire, Chanter, Iona, and Scapa fields; the Flotta terminal; and related pipeines and undeveloped acreage. Talisman has acquired working interests in these assets from Elf Exploration UK PLC, ARCO British Ltd., and Texaco Britain Ltd. The fields could potentially produce until the year 2020 and beyond, Talisman said. It has already identified development and cost-saving opportunities.

Talisman also announced plans to develop Halley oil field, also in the North Sea. The company will exchange assets with BP Amoco PLC and Amerada Hess Corp. to acquire interests adjacent to its operated Clyde-Orion core area. Talisman will then become operator of the field and acquire a 60% working interest.

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