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OMV announces first oil flows from Maari field

February 25, 2009 - 9:00 am (CET)

  • New Zealand’s largest oil field passed a significant milestone
  • Investments have proven strong commitment to the region
  • OMV strengthens its off-shore position

OMV, the leading energy group in the European growth belt, announces first oil from Maari, New Zealand’s largest oil field, located 80 km off Taranaki’s south coast, operated by OMV New Zealand in a joint venture with Todd Energy, Horizon Oil International Ltd and Cue Taranaki Pty Ltd. Over its 10-15 year life Maari is expected to produce some 50 mn barrels of oil. A peak production level is expected at approximately 30,000 bbl/d in 2010 (gross).

Helmut Langanger, OMV Executive Board member responsible for Exploration and Production stated: “New Zealand’s largest oil field passed a significant milestone with oil flowing to the permanent production facilities for the first time. This field has the potential to establish OMV as the largest liquid hydrocarbon producer in New Zealand.”

The first oil flow marks just over 25 years since the Maari field was first discovered. Back then, the depth of the water, distance from shore and the waxy nature of the oil meant cost effective production was not possible.

“It’s very satisfying to get to this point,” said OMV New Zealand Managing Director Steve Hounsell.

Drilling rig has been in place at the Maari wellhead platform since November last year, to drill a total eight wells, five production and three water injectors. Two wells have been completed; the second one is currently being hooked up to the production facilities. The other production wells will progressively come on stream over the next few months.

Over the next two weeks, production testing will take place to ensure the floating production, storage and the offtake vessel, the Raroa, is ready to process the field’s output. The vessel is anchored 1.5 km from the wellhead platform, Tirotiro Moana.

The Raroa’s role is to separate the oil from any gas and water and provide temporary storage until tankers arrive to transfer the oil to refineries. The first offtake is expected to occur in April 2009. Mr. Hounsell said the Maari development and subsequent production has been also great news for Taranaki and New Zealand.

Field development, including some further appraisal drilling by the drilling rig is expected to be completed by the third quarter of this year.

Balanced international E&P portfolio
OMV holds a balanced international E&P portfolio in 20 countries structured around six core regions, namely CEE, North Africa, Northwest Europe, the Middle East, Australia/New Zealand and Russia/Caspian region. OMV's current daily production volume is approximately 317,000 boe/d and the Company's proven reserves at the end of 2008 were approximately 1.2 bn boe.

Background information:

Partners:

OMV New Zealand Ltd (operator)  69%
Todd Energy  16%
Horizon Oil International Ltd  10%
Cue Taranaki Pty Ltd  5%

OMV in New Zealand
OMV has been active in Australia/ New Zealand, one of OMV’s six E&P core regions, since 1999. OMV has offices both in Perth, Australia, and in Wellington, New Zealand. OMV's New Zealand activities are run by 56 employees in Wellington and the Maari project team in Perth and New Plymouth. In New Zealand, OMV now currently has interests in 10 exploration permits and in 3 petroleum mining permits.

OMV Aktiengesellschaft
With Group sales of EUR 25,54 bn and a workforce of 41,282 employees in 2008, OMV Aktiengesellschaft is one of Austria’s largest listed industrial companies. As the leading oil and gas group in Central Europe, OMV is active in Refining and Marketing (R&M) in 13 countries. In Exploration and Production (E&P) OMV is active in 20 countries on five continents. In Gas & Power (G&P) OMV sells approx. 13 bcm gas per year. Via Baumgarten, one of the most important turntables for gas in Europe, approximately 66 bcm gas is transported annually. OMV’s Central European Gas Hub is amongst the three largest hubs in Continental Europe.

OMV is the largest oil and gas group in Central Europe, with oil and gas reserves of approx. 1.2 bn boe, daily production of around 317,000 boe and an annual refining capacity of approx. 26 mn t. OMV now has 2,528 filling stations in 13 countries. The market share of the group in the R&M business segment in the Danube Region is now 20%.

OMV further strengthened its leading position in the European growth belt through the acquisition of 41.58% of Petrol Ofisi, Turkey’s leading company in the retail and commercial business.

In June 2006, OMV has established the OMV Future Energy Fund, a wholly owned subsidiary to support projects in renewable energy with more than EUR 100 mn to initiate the change from a pure oil and gas group to an energy group with renewable energy in its portfolio.

OMV: Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
OMV is a member of the U.N. Global Compact and actively committed to the values enshrined in its Code of Conduct. These include a strong sense of responsibility towards the social and natural environment in economically weak regions. OMV works hard to address economic, environmental and social issues related to its operations. Its CSR activities are fully documented in biannual performance reports compiled according to Global Reporting Initiative guidelines.

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