013-02-04 20:03 ET - News Release


Mr. Nasim Tyab reports


The Direccao Geral de Energia e Geologia, an agency of the Portuguese Ministry of Economy and Employment, has awarded Oracle Energy Corp. the Barreiro oil and gas concession in Portugal's southern Lusitanian basin. The new concession is 95 per cent onshore and covers an area of approximately 211,275 acres in size (855 square kilometres). Terms of the concession provide for an initial exploration period of eight years that expires on Jan. 31, 2021.

In the last five years there has been renewed interest in oil and gas in Portugal, both onshore and offshore. Seismic and drilling has confirmed the existence of two petroleum systems and three significant exploration plays: the Triassic presalt, a Liassic (Lower Jurassic) unconventional resource play and Upper Jurassic reefs. From the evaluation of existing data over the area, Oracle expects all three of these plays to be present in its new concession. In addition, Portugal is relatively unexplored, has excellent fiscal terms and has ready access to premium European markets.

Mohave Oil and Gas Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of Porto Energy, The Woodlands, Tex., U.S., agreed to work with Oracle to aid in its technical understanding of the reserve potential in its new concession. Mohave has extensive experience in Portugal and holds a working interest in nearly 1.72 million gross contiguous acres (7,000 square kilometres) in the basin north of the new Oracle concession. Mohave recently completed drilling and coring 23 shallow Lias wells as part of the initial phase of its unconventional resource play. While results of geochemical analysis from these wells continue to add positive results to Mohave's play, studies continue.

Mohave also drilled its first presalt well (and only the ninth in the basin) to a total measured depth of 3,240 metres. The well encountered a 300-metre gas column trapped below salt and did penetrate approximately 50 net metres of sand with good reservoir properties. Although reservoir sands were not sufficient for a commercial success, this well demonstrated that the presalt play can work in the basin.

Oracle's concession has reserve potential in both the presalt and in a southern extension of Mohave's Lias unconventional resource play, as well as the Jurassic reef play. Mohave has agreed to provide Oracle technical advice for both these plays in return for a three-year option for a maximum 25-per-cent working interest in the concession, subject to approval by the government of Portugal.

Oracle's chairman Nasim Tyab remarked: "Oracle is pleased to be working with the DGEG and Mohave on this exciting new venture. We believe there is significant upside in Portuguese oil and gas, and that this new concession is a good opportunity for Oracle to secure a working stake in the country."

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