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Noble Energy Hits Net Pay at Gunflint Well in U.S. Gulf of Mexico

Noble Energy, Inc. today announced that the second appraisal well at Gunflint well in the Gulf of Mexico, successfully encountered 109 feet of net pay within the primary reservoir targets.

Results of drilling, wireline logs and reservoir data have confirmed an estimated gross resource range(1) of 65 to 90 million barrels of oil equivalent in the primary structure, which was in line with Company expectations. The Mississippi Canyon 992 #1 well, located one mile west of the original discovery well, was drilled to a total depth of approximately 32,800 feet in a water depth of 6,100 feet. Commercial hydrocarbons were not encountered in the deeper exploration objective. Additional exploration potential remains in an adjacent three-way structure to the north, a candidate for future exploration following development of the confirmed resources.

Once operations are completed, the well will be suspended for future use. The net cost of drilling the lower exploration zone was approximately $15 million, which will be expensed in the second quarter of 2013.

Susan Cunningham, Noble Energy’s Senior Vice President Deepwater Gulf of Mexico, West Africa and Frontier Regions, commented, “Our appraisal program at Gunflint solidifies our plans for a subsea tieback development, with sanction planned for later this year. Along with our Big Bend discovery, we now have two major projects in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico targeting first production at the end of 2015. These developments represent significant value to our overall portfolio.”

Noble Energy plans to move the drilling rig to Troubadour, a low-risk amplitude prospect offsetting the Big Bend discovery, over the next several weeks. The well is expected to reach total depth late in the third quarter.

Noble Energy operates Gunflint with a 31.14 percent working interest. Other partners in the project are Ecopetrol America Inc. with 31.50 percent, Marathon Oil Company with 18.23 percent and Samson Offshore, LLC with 19.13 percent.

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Vantage Reports Net Loss of USD 10 Mln

Vantage Reports Net Loss of USD 10 Mln| Offshore Energy Today

Vantage Drilling, a Cayman Islands exempted offshore drilling contractor, reports a net loss of $10.0 million or ($0.03) per diluted share for the three months ended June 30, 2012 as compared to a net loss of $40.1 million or ($0.14) per diluted share for the three months ended June 30, 2011.

Vantage Reports Net Loss of USD 10 Mln| Offshore Energy Today.

Coastal Energy Encounters Net Pay Offshore Thailand

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Coastal Energy, an international oil and gas exploration and production company with assets in Thailand announces the successful Miocene discovery in the Bua Ban South A-04 well.

The Bua Ban South A-04 well was drilled to a depth of 3,250 feet TVD on the eastern flank fault block at Bua Ban South, approximately 1.5 miles south of the Bua Ban Main A-11 well. The A-04 well encountered 42 feet of net pay in the Lower Miocene M75 and M100 sands with 29.5% average porosity. The M75 is a newly discovered pay sand in the Lower Miocene. Initial results indicate that this is an extension of the Miocene reservoir which was encountered in the Bua Ban Main A-11. The A-11 well has been producing since September 2010 and is currently producing over 500 bopd. The minimum areal extent of the closure is approximately 550 acres.

Randy Bartley, President & Chief Executive Officer, commented:

“We are greatly encouraged by the successful Miocene results in the A-04 well. We have now discovered oil in three different Miocene intervals between Bua Ban Main and Bua Ban South. This new discovery is very positive for the Miocene remaining potential across the entire basin as well as supporting the potential of recent Oligocene discoveries in the Bua Ban South area. The Bua Ban South A-03ST#1 well has been spudded and will test the Eocene objective. We are currently evaluating locations for Miocene appraisal wells and will begin drilling those following the A-03ST#1.”

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Norway: Statoil 3Q Net Income Rises 39 pct

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Statoil’s third quarter 2011 net operating income was NOK 39.3 billion, a 39% increase compared to NOK 28.2 billion in the third quarter of 2010.

“Statoil delivered strong financial results in the third quarter of 2011, reflecting operational performance in line with expectations and strong oil and gas prices throughout the period,” says Helge Lund, Statoil’s chief executive officer.

Statoil presented the long term strategy and long term growth outlook on its capital markets day in June 2011, where revitalisation of the NCS with high value barrels and expansion in unconventionals are among key building blocks.

“The giant Aldous/Avaldsnes discovery clearly reaffirms the strong potential of the Norwegian continental shelf, and we continue our long-term effort to position Statoil as an industrial player and operator within unconventionals through the offer to acquire all shares of the Brigham Exploration Company,” says Lund.

The quarterly result was mainly affected by a 30% increase in the average prices for liquids measured in NOK, a 13% increase in average gas prices, a 13% increase in lifted volume compared to the same period last year, and a net impairment loss of NOK 4.8 billion mainly related to the refinery business.

Net income in the third quarter of 2011 was NOK 9.9 billion compared to NOK 13.8 billion in the same period last year. The decrease stems primarily from lower gain on net financial items and higher tax rates, and was only partly offset by higher net operating income. The tax rate for the quarter was 76.6%.

Adjusted earnings in the third quarter of 2011 were NOK 43.1 billion, a 62% increase compared to NOK 26.7 billion in the third quarter of 2010.

Adjusted earnings after tax were NOK 11.4 billion in the third quarter of 2011. Adjusted earnings after tax exclude the effect of tax on net financial items, and represent an effective adjusted tax rate of 73.5% in the third quarter of 2011.

Total equity production was 1,764 mboe per day in the third quarter of 2011 compared to 1,552 mboe per day in the third quarter of 2010.

Highlights since second quarter 2011:

Successful exploration, highlighted by the Aldous/Avaldsnes oil discovery in the North Sea, one of the largest finds ever on the Norwegian continental shelf. Statoil holds a 40% interest in both licences. In total, 9 discoveries on 13 completed wells by 30 September.

Further expanding in unconventionals, through a merger agreement between Statoil and Brigham Exploration Company for Statoil to acquire all the outstanding shares of Brigham through an all-cash tender offer. If the tender offer is successful, the acquisition adds 375,000 net acres in the Williston Basin with potential for oil production from the Bakken and Three Forks formations. The transaction builds on Statoil’s stepwise build-up in the United States and establishes Statoil as an operator in unconventional plays.

Maturing the project portfolio, including August start-up of the Pazflor development in Angola. Statoil has a 23.33% interest and Pazflor is expected to contribute with 47 000 barrels per day in equity capacity when plateau is reached in the first quarter next year.

Industrial progress, as plans for development and operation (PDO) are submitted to the authorities for the Skuld field in the Norwegian Sea and for the subsea gas compression project at Åsgard, to maintain production from the Mikkel and Midgard reservoirs. PDO for Stjerne and Vigdis North East has been approved.

Participating interests in two exploration licences in Camamu-Almada basin offshore Brazil have been farmed down 10% and 15% respectively to Gran Tierra Energy. The agreement is subject to approval by Brazilian authorities and other conditions.

1 billion Norwegian kroner = 182.23900 million U.S. dollars

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