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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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BP Gains Access to 5 More Deepwater Blocks Off Angola

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BP’s involvement with Angola goes back to the mid 1970s. During the 1990s, BP made very substantial investments in Angola’s offshore oil, and it is now an important part of the company’s upstream portfolio. The UK based oil giant today confirmed that it has gained access to five more deepwater exploration and production blocks offshore Angola.

These give BP a leading position in Angola, with interests in nine blocks accounting for a total acreage of 32,650 square kilometres (km2).

In a ceremony today in Luanda, in the presence of state oil company Sonangol’s president Manuel Vincente and BP group chief executive Bob Dudley, the production sharing agreements were signed for four new blocks covering 19,400 km2 in the Kwanza and Benguela basins.

Separately, BP has recently taken a 40% stake in the 4,840 km2 Block 26 in the Benguela basin, by agreeing a farm-in deal with Brazilian national oil company, Petrobras, which operates the block.

“In October, we told the markets we would build on our strengths in exploration and in the deepwater to provide future growth for BP. This new access builds on the major presence we have developed in Angola over the past 10 years, investing a total of $21 billion in the business. We plan to double our global spend on exploration and this huge new acreage gives us more great opportunities. We look forward to working with Sonangol in the Kwanza and Benguela basins,” said Bob Dudley. “The last 14 months have been our most successful for a decade in gaining new access for exploration – with 69 new exploration licences in 11 countries.”

BP was awarded operatorship of Blocks 19 and 24 with 50% interest, and additional non-operating interests in Blocks 20 (20%) and 25 (15%). With Block 26, the five new blocks cover a total area of 24,000 km2 in water depths from 200 to 2500 metres, and increase BP’s total Angolan acreage by 275%.

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Total Strikes Oil in Deepwater Angola Block 17/06

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Total announces that its subsidiary, TEPA (Block 17/06) Limited, and Sociedade Nacional de Combustíveis de Angola (Sonangol E.P.), have discovered hydrocarbons in the north-eastern area of the deep offshore block 17/06.

Drilled in a water depth of 445 meters, the Canna-1 well discovered hydrocarbons in reservoir of Miocene age and produced more than 5,000 barrels per day of high quality oil (33° API) during a production test.

Sociedade Nacional de Combustíveis de Angola (Sonangol) is the concessionaire of the Block 17/06. TEPA (Block 17/06) Limited is the operator of the Block 17/06 with a 30% stake. Total’s partners in the block are Sonangol Pesquisa e Produção S.A. (30%), Sonangol Sinopec International (SSI) Seventeen Limited (27.5%), ACREP Bloco 17 S.A. (5%), Falcon Oil Holding Angola S.A. (5%) and PARTEX Oil and Gas (Holdings) Corporation (2.5%).

Total Exploration & Production in Angola

Total is present in Angola since 1953. In Angola, Total operated 460,000 barrels oil equivalent per day (boe/d) in 2010, and its SEC* equity production amounted approximately 163,000 boe/d. This production comes essentially from Blocks 17,0 and 14.

Deep offshore Block 17, operated by Total with a 40% interest, is Total’s principal asset in Angola. It is composed of four major zones: Girassol-Rosa and Dalia, which are currently producing; Pazflor, a project under development for a production start in the second half of 2011; and CLOV (based on the Cravo, Lirio, Orquidea and Violeta discoveries), for which the development was recently launched.

Total is also the operator with a 30% stake in the ultra deep offshore Block 32, on which 12 discoveries were made, confirming the oil potential of the block. Pre-development studies for a first production zone in the central south eastern portion of the block are underway.

In addition, the Angola LNG project for the construction of a liquefaction plant near Soyo is designed to bring the country’s natural gas reserves to market. This project, on which Total holds a 13.6% stake, will be supplied by the associated gas from the fields on Blocks 0, 14, 15, 17 and 18. The project is underway with production expected to begin in 2012.

In Angola, as in all countries where Total operates, the Group is committed to developing the Angolan oil industry while recruiting and providing professional training to local workers. Through its ambitious “Angolanisation” and technology transfer plans, Total has strengthened the local economy and made of Hygiene, Safety and Environment awareness a top priority. Total E&P Angola has developed a transparent and solid corporate social responsibility policy around three main axes: health, education (opening of four high schools in the provinces in 2009) and economic community development.

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