Saturday, March 14, 2009

CPC Corp Awaits Indonesia's OK On Stakes In 2 New Blocks

TAIPEI -(Dow Jones)- Taiwan government-owned refiner CPC Corp. is awaiting regulatory approval for stakes it acquired in two Indonesia offshore exploration blocks late last year, deputy chief executive of CPC's exploration and production business division John Hsu said Friday.

"We signed the agreement in December, but we're still waiting for approval from (Indonesia's upstream oil and gas regulating body) BPMigas," said Hsu.

CPC got a 24.5% stake in a block in the Arafura Sea operated by Houston, Texas-based ConocoPhillips (COP) and a 20% stake in a block offshore Kalimantan operated by Italy's Eni SpA (E), said Hsu.

CPC is exploring for oil and gas in Australia, the U.S., Chad and Libya, and produces oil in Ecuador and Indonesia. It aims to raise its crude oil self- sufficiency ratio to 10% in five years from just under 3% now.

CPC also produces around 400 million cubic meters of natural gas onshore Taiwan, about 4% of the island's annual consumption.

CPC plans to boost this year's exploration and production budget by half to NT$4.93 billion (US$143 million) from 2008, with most of it destined for overseas projects.

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