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Repsol Sinopec Makes High-Impact Discovery Off Brazil

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Statoil together with operator Repsol Sinopec and partner Petrobras has confirmed a high-impact discovery (*) in the Pão de Açúcar prospect offshore Brazil.

The partnership announced today that it has made a high impact discovery in the Pão de Açúcar prospect located in the BM-C-33 block in the Campos Basin.  The well, drilled by the Stena DrillMAX drillship, is located some 195 kilometres offshore Rio de Janeiro State in 2,800 meters of water.

The Pão de Açúcar well encountered two pre-salt accumulations comprising a hydrocarbon column of 480 meters with a total pay of around 350 meters. A test performed in a partial section of the pay zone flowed 5,000 barrels per day of light oil and 28.5 million cubic feet per day of gas. This was a choked Drill Stem Test (DST) with very limited drawdown. The Pão de Açúcar discovery is the third find made in the BM-C-33 block after Seat and Gávea and confirms the area’s high potential.

“The development potential of the Pão and Gávea discoveries will now be evaluated by the partnership. This discovery increases our understanding of the pre-salt potential in the Campos Basin and improves our confidence in the recently acquired acreage position in the pre-salt Kwanza basin of Angola,” says executive vice president for Exploration in Statoil, Tim Dodson.

“Statoil’s exploration strategy focuses on high impact opportunities and the deepening of core areas. The Pão de Açúcar success shows that we are delivering on our strategy,” continues Dodson.

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“Statoil has clear ambitions to grow in Brazil through new exploration opportunities. The Pão discovery will become an important building block in our growth ambitions,” says Kjetil Hove, country president for Statoil in Brazil.

Repsol Sinopec is operator of the exploration consortium with a 35% stake. Partners Statoil and Petrobras hold respective 35% and 30% shares.

Statoil is also the operator of the Peregrino field in Brazil, which came on stream in April 2011.

The Pão discovery is the sixth high impact discovery made by Statoil in the last 12 months. The other discoveries are Skrugard and Havis in the Barents Sea, Johan Sverdrup (former Aldous/Avaldsnes) in the North Sea, Peregrino South in Brazil and Zafarani in Tanzania.

(*) ”High-impact well” =  a total of more than 250 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe), or 100 million boe net to Statoil.

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Angola: Azul-1 Deepwater Well Brings Oil to Maersk Oil

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Songangol, Maersk Oil and other partners declared the Azul-1 deepwater exploration well, located in Block 23 in the Kwanza Basin offshore Angola, a discovery well.

The Azul-1 well, the first to penetrate pre-salt objectives in Angolan deepwater, was drilled in water depths of 923 meters and reached a final depth of 5,334 meters. The condition of the well prevented an assessment of flow capacity by a conventional test. This was performed as a mini-Drill Stem Test that enabled the recovery of two good quality oil samples.

The preliminary interpretation of the data indicated a potential flow capacity greater than 3,000 barrels of oil a day. Taking into account these encouraging results, Maersk Oil will further evaluate the results of this discovery and will proceed with exploration work in the block.

Sonangol E.P. is the block Concessionaire. Maersk Oil is operator of Block 23 with a 50% working interest with partners Svenska (30%) and Sonangol P & P (20%).

“We are encouraged by the results of our first pre-salt exploration well in this region, which was also the first ever deep water well targeting pre-salt reservoirs in the Kwanza Basin. The result may be a further step towards our goal of building up a significant business in Angola,” said Lars Nydahl Jorgensen, Head of Exploration at Maersk Oil.

“There is substantial evaluation work ahead of us to determine whether the discovery is enough to invest further to get production going. This will be done by, amongst other things, state of the art reprocessing of seismic data. Fully appraising the discovery will take several years and it is far too early to guess the outcome,” Jorgensen said.

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