Global explorers turn to New Zealand

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A high-powered group of global oil and gas companies have converged on the New Zealand capital Wellington to consider new exploration prospects.

New Zealand Petroleum and Minerals, part of the Ministry of Economic Development, is driving the meeting by capitalising on the international attention of the Rugby World Cup.

Among the dozen or so participants in the meeting are Chevron and Conoco-Philips from the US, ENI from Italy, and the Chinese national oil company.

Chevron owns the Caltex retail chain in New Zealand but is not currently an explorer or producer in the country.

Other US companies include Murphy Oil Corporation, Apache Corporation, and Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, which has deep-water exploration permits off the coast of New Zealand in the Taranaki Basin and Canterbury Basin.

Other international companies include the China National Offshore Oil Corporation, Norwegian state oil company Statoil, and Korea’s KoGas.

The meeting is being facilitated by Global Pacific & Partners CEO Duncan Clarke, who said New Zealand was working hard to attract investment from resource companies.

“From the New Zealand point of view, they are very open,” he said.

“They’re asking ‘what do we have to do to get you here?’”

Clarke said the business prospects in New Zealand were often deepwater opportunities, which meant the country needed to attract high quality and experienced operators.

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