Sterling Updates Ampasindava & Ambilobe in Madagascar

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 7/23/2010, Location: Africa

Sterling’s Ambilobe and Ampasindava blocks are located in the deepwater basin offshore north-west Madagascar. The exploration programme for both blocks continues to be hampered due to the political situation in Madagascar; there are no signs of an imminent resolution of the underlying issues.

In the Ampasindava block, the large Sifaka prospect is ready to drill and Sterling (30% WI) awaits confirmation from Exxon, the operator (70% WI), on timing for the well. RISC estimate the gross un-risked mean prospective resource for the Sifaka Prospect is 2 billion bbl (RISC Competent Persons Report, March 2008). The estimated cost to drill the Sifaka prospect will materially exceed the value of the remaining carry and Sterling will seek to farm down its 30% working interest in the PSC to cover these costs.

The Ampasindava block is in phase 3 of the exploration period which expires in late 2010 and includes a firm exploration well. There are provisions within the licence agreement for prolongation or extension of the current exploration phase.

In the Sterling operated Ambilobe block (100% WI) all work commitments for Phase 2 have been fulfilled and evaluation of several large leads of Cretaceous and Tertiary age continues. Phase 2 of the exploration period expires in November 2010 and Sterling is seeking a farm-in partner to share the cost of future seismic acquisition and exploration drilling.


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