Anadarko to ramp up deep-water drive

US independent Anadarko Petroleum plans an aggressive exploration campaign worldwide over the next year and a half that will include drilling the first deep-water well off Liberia, the head of the company's exploration unit said

"The inventory of opportunities we have is better than it's ever been," Bob Daniels, Anadarko's senior vice-president of Worldwide Exploration, said during a speech webcast from an investor conference in Denver. "We will continue with a very aggressive exploration programme around the world."

The company's success in Ghana, where it last year brought the vast Jubilee discovery into production, has spread into neighbouring West African nations, he said.

In addition to offshore exploration in Sierra Leone and the Ivory Coast, Anadarko is drilling Liberia's first deep-water well at the company's Montserrado prospect.

Judging from seismic data and other geologic factors, the Montserrado prospect "is a look-alike" to the Jubilee discovery, Daniels said.

Jubilee is estimated to hold the equivalent of between 600mn and 1.5bn barrels of oil.

In all, Anadarko plans 15 deep-water exploration and appraisal wells in West African waters, Daniels said.

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