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Shell confirms deepwater oil discovery offshore French Guiana

Posted on 09 September 2011

As part of the Tullow-operated joint venture, Shell today confirmed an oil discovery in the Guyane Maritime permit approximately 150 km offshore French Guiana.

The GM-ES-1 well is being drilled in a water depth of more than 2,000 meters and to date has been drilled to a depth of 5,711 meters. The well has encountered more than 70-meters of net oil pay in two target formations. The joint venture plans to drill ahead to the planned target depth.

“We are pleased with the preliminary results of this first ever deepwater well offshore French Guiana,” said Dave Lawrence, Shell executive vice president Exploration and Commercial. “We are early in the evaluation, but the initial results are encouraging for this new play. The joint venture will continue to drill ahead, evaluate the well results, and determine next steps.”

Shell acquired an initial equity interest of 33% in the joint venture in 2009 and increased that interest to 45% in 2010, subject to government approval. The rest is held by Tullow (27.5%); Total (25%); and Northpet (2.5%), a company owned 50% by Northern Petroleum and 50% by Wessex Exploration.

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