press release

Chevron Press Release - Chevron Named Operator Of Major Upstream Assets In Australia

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 13, 1999 -- Chevron announced today that its upstream operating subsidiary, Chevron Australia Pty Ltd, is to take over operatorship of oil and gas exploration and producing assets previously managed by West Australian Petroleum Pty Limited (WAPET).

Chevron's proposal to assume operatorship was accepted by the other WAPET joint venturers, Texaco Australia Pty Ltd, Mobil Exploration and Producing Australia Pty Ltd, Shell Development Australia Pty Ltd and others.

The joint venturers' holdings include Australia's first major oil field on Barrow Island, as well as the Thevenard Island oil fields and the substantial reserves of the Greater Gorgon gas fields. The oil and gas fields are all located offshore Western Australia.

"Chevron views Australia as a key element in its global growth portfolio," said Dick Matzke, a director of Chevron Corp. and president of Chevron Overseas Petroleum Inc., "and we are delighted to be expanding our activities in Australia to include operatorship. Our role as operator will reinforce our long-term investment and presence in Australia and the Asia/Pacific region."

Chevron has been the advisor providing management and technical support to WAPET for over 35 years. "We see acceptance of our proposal to become operator as a vote of confidence in us by our joint venturers and we will work very hard to meet and exceed their expectations," said John Gass, managing director of Chevron Australia Pty Ltd. "The next step is to establish a managed transfer of responsibilities to Chevron from WAPET to ensure a seamless transition when we formally assume the operator role during the first quarter of 2000.

"We plan to develop a strong Australian employee base which will provide career opportunities for local staff and encourage technology transfer," added Gass.

"We applaud this move by Chevron and welcome Chevron's increased involvement and commitment to Australia," said Colin Barnett, Western Australian Minister for Resources Development and Energy.

This development follows closely on Chevron's earlier decision to relocate its Melbourne employees to Perth and to take advantage of cost savings and other synergies arising out of the integration of its Papua New Guinea and Australian business units.

Note to Editors:

Chevron first entered Australia in 1940 as part of Caltex, a 50/50 joint venture with Texaco. Chevron began exploring for oil and gas in Australia when WAPET was formed in 1952.

Chevron's non-operator holdings in Australia include a one-sixth interest in the largest resources project in Australia, the North West Shelf liquefied natural gas project, and the Scott Reef and Brecknock fields, operated by Woodside Energy Limited, interests in the northern Browse Basin operated by Shell, and three new deepwater exploration permits recently awarded in the offshore Canning basin.

The largest gas holder in Western Australia, Chevron's interests in permits amount to over one-fifth of Western Australia's oil and gas reserves.

On the east coast, Chevron is leading the Papua New Guinea-Queensland Gas Pipeline Project which is aiming to meet demand for cost effective and environmentally sensitive energy to the north-east of Australia.

Chevron Australia was one of the driving forces behind the formation of Australia LNG Pty Ltd. Australia LNG was launched in March to provide a flexible vehicle for marketing LNG from Australia to markets outside Japan.

Chevron currently occupies offices in Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Cairns and Port Moresby.

WAPET currently produces 12,000 bbls per day at Barrow Island and 18,000 bbls per day at Thevenard Island.

Updated: December 1999