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January 25, 2010 --- Vol. 16, No. 8January 2010

Statoil takes 25% interest in ConocoPhillips’ Chukchi leases

In a deal involving cash and trades, Statoil is acquiring a 25 percent working interest in 50 ConocoPhillipsChukchi Sea leases and ConocoPhillips is acquiring some of Statoil’s acreage in the Gulf of Mexico.

The companies said this morning that the Chukchi Sea leases are those acquired by ConocoPhillips in the 2008 federal outer continental shelf lease sale. ConocoPhillips will retain operatorship and majority working interest in the leases.

“Statoil’s decision to acquire interest in these leases substantiates ConocoPhillips’ view that world-class hydrocarbon potential exists in the Chukchi Sea of Alaska,” Larry Archibald, ConocoPhillips senior vice president for Exploration and Business Development, said in a statement. “ConocoPhillips has had a long-term business relationship with Statoil in many ventures around the world, particularly in Norway, and welcomes its expertise in this harsh operating climate,” he said.

The companies have conducted joint operations for more than 30 years on the Norwegian continental shelf, and said that operating experience has allowed both companies to gain expertise in tackling harsh environments and to develop new technology to enhance recovery from existing fields.

“The Chukchi Sea in Alaska is a new frontier area for all operators and we believe that companies like Statoil and ConocoPhillips are among the best companies to take on this exciting journey together. By adding on these leases to the 16 we already have in Chukchi, we have now acquired a sizable acreage portfolio to explore in the coming years,” said Tony Doré, heading up Statoil’s exploration group in North America.

ConocoPhillips’ initial drilling in the Chukchi Sea is scheduled for 2012.

In addition to financial considerations from Statoil, ConocoPhillips will also acquire 50 percent working interest in 16 Statoil-operated Gulf of Mexico leases and will acquire all of Statoil’s 25 percent working interest in five additional GOM leases operated by ConocoPhillips. All of the involved GOM blocks are in the emerging Lower Tertiary play where ConocoPhillips has participated in the 2009-announced discoveries Tiber and Shenandoah.

See story in Jan. 31 issue, available online at noon, Friday, Jan. 29 at www.PetroleumNews.com

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