DRILLING

Cooper Energy announces 2003 drilling 'season'

The football season is clearly upon us if the use of AFL metaphors in the recently announced Cooper Energy drilling timetable is anything to go by.

Cooper Energy announces 2003 drilling 'season'

Junior oil producer Cooper Energy has announced its "eagerly awaited" 2003 drilling schedule, which could see it participating in up to six oil wells in the highly sought after, but significantly under-explored western flank of the Cooper Basin in South Australia.

Cooper Energy chairman Greg Hancock said the company has a very exciting drilling program in 2003 with interests in possible six exploration wells in seven months from May to November.

"The schedule kicks off with Moana-1, to be drilled on the boundary of PEL 92 (Cooper 25%), with the Moana structure extending from PEL 107 into PEL 92.

"Even though Moana-1 is a wildcat well, it has the right address, located between the Sellicks-1 oil discovery and Santos' Lake Hope oil fields.

This a fantastic season opener with Cooper gaining a free test of a structure that is reported to be significantly larger than the Sellicks structure," Hancock said.

"The main game in the southern permits of the basin will be focussed on PEL 92, containing the Sellicks oil field, which is shaping up as a key permit for Cooper this year.

"Following Moana-1 will be Christies-1, which will test how far further west of the Sellicks and Lake Hope oil fields the oil has travelled into PEL 92.

"The drilling of Brighton-1 is contingent upon success from either of these wells, which will confirm the importance of this permit to host further oil accumulations.

"Shareholders and investors can look forward to a period of high sustained activity in 2003, as a result of the drilling occurring in PEL 92 in May/June to test the newly discovered oil exploration fairway along the western flank of the Cooper Basin.

"On our northern permits, Cooper is excited by Eucalyptus-1 given its potential to contain up to three million barrels of oil, the fact we are operator and earn our high interest (40%) in PEL 88 after drilling this well.

"Any goals kicked in this area will result in a substantial re-rating by Cooper of the northern permits, which are substantially under drilled and contain several other very attractive prospects.

"If there wasn't enough interest in Eucalyptus-1, this will be followed by Semaphore-1 in the recently granted PEL 110 permit that last received cursory drilling back in 1990.

"Semaphore-1 will test the limits of rocks sourcing oil from the deeper parts of the basin in the east and trapping it in an analogous fashion to the Sellicks oil discovery to the south."

Mr Hancock said he was pleased to note that shareholders could look forward to substantial activity in a very short time in two very distinct areas of the Cooper Basin.

"The board of Cooper is eager to repeat its 2002 success, in which oil was discovered in and is currently producing from the very first well, Sellicks-1, we participated in since listing," Hancock said.

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