New Zealand bright spot for TAG Oil Ltd.

Nov. 5, 2013 at 8:11 AM

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Nov. 5 (UPI) -- Canadian energy company TAG Oil Ltd. said its new drilling program in parts of New Zealand was turning out to be a lucrative development.

TAG Oil, a Canadian company with a New Zealand focus, said it had "encouraging results" from its reserve areas.

"We're excited with the program we have under way, TAG's most active ever, and results to date have us looking forward to establishing new production and reserves in New Zealand for many years to come," TAG Oil Chief Executive Officer Garth Johnson said in a statement Monday.

The company said it encountered oil and natural gas while drilling into conventional and unconventional areas of the onshore Taranaki and East Coast basins, finding an estimated 534 million barrels of oil and 7.3 trillion cubic feet of natural gas so far. The East Coast basin holds at least 1.7 billion barrels of oil, based on independent estimates.

The New Zealand government in September said overall natural gas production increased 8 percent this year. Oil production, however, was the lowest in five years because of field closures in February.

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