press release

Chevron Press Release - Chevron Receives Go-ahead To Explore For Oil in Nigeria's Benue Basin

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 15, 1994 -- Chevron Petroleum Nigeria Limited (CPNL), a subsidiary of Chevron Corporation, signed a production-sharing agreement with the government of Nigeria to explore for oil in the Benue Basin, a new exploration area in northeast Nigeria.

William Edman, chairman and managing director of Chevron Nigeria Limited, said in Lagos that Chevron agreed to conduct a work program over the next six years to discover reserves in the Benue Trough. The project is centered on six exploration blocks totaling approximately 5,800 square miles (15,000 square kilometers) in an area situated about 500 miles northeast of the city of Lagos. Edman pointed out that the new operating company, CPNL, was recently formed to handle the Benue project. Seismic work will begin in early 1995.

Under the new agreement, Chevron will finance the exploration phase and offset its costs from any future crude oil production. Edman pointed out that the new production-sharing arrangement is typical of the types of exploration and production contracts now preferred by the Nigerian government as it moves away from previously structured joint-venture arrangements.

In addition to the six blocks where it will serve as operator, Chevron will also hold a 30-percent interest through a farm-in arrangement in three additional Benue blocks operated by Elf Petroleum Nigeria Limited.

Chevron has two other companies in Nigeria: Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL), the third-largest oil producer in Nigeria, operates and has a 40-percent interest in concessions totaling 2.3 million acres in onshore and offshore regions in the Niger Delta. There, CNL operates under a joint-venture arrangement with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), which holds the remaining 60 percent interest. Total production from the CNL-operated fields averaged over 360,000 barrels a day (to date) in 1994.

Chevron Oil Company Nigeria Limited (COCNL), another Chevron subsidiary in Nigeria, produces crude oil from offshore fields in a joint-venture operated by Texaco. Chevron has a 20-percent share in the joint-venture's total production of approximately 58,000 barrels of crude per day.

Chevron companies have operated in Nigeria since 1961.

Updated: November 1994