Joint venture approves Chinguetti project

The project is in production sharing contract Area B, about 90km west of the Mauritanian capital, Nouakchott. Chinguetti, which was discovered in 2001, has proven and
probable reserves estimated at around 120 million brl oil.

Woodside holds 53.846% of the project, with Hardman Resources holding 21.6%, BG Group 11.63%, Premier 9.231%, and Roc Oil 3.693%. Woodside’s Africa business unit director, Ian Jackson, said the joint venture’s decision to proceed would allow work to begin immediately under key contracts. Based on the award of contracts and anticipated timing of vessel availability, first oil is expected to be produced by March, 2006.

The Chinguetti field will include six production wells and four water-injection wells for reservoir pressure support, with flowlines to a permanently-moored floating-production, storage, and offloading vessel moored over the field in about 800m of water. Surplus gas not required for fuel will be returned to a nearby reservoir via a gas injection well. The FPSO facility will be a converted trading tanker owned and operated under a service agreement with Bergesen Offshore of Norway. Bergesen is a specialist provider and operator of floating production systems with current operations experience in Equatorial Guinea and Angola; the vessel will have a storage capacity of 1.6 million barrels.

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