Woodside Chief Executive Officer Peter Coleman said acquisition of a 40 percent stake in an exploration and production sharing contract in Gabon from Noble Energy lays a solid foundation for his company in African oil.
"Once again, this opportunity reflects our disciplined and strategic approach to studying regional petroleum systems and is a good fit for our core capabilities in deepwater exploration," he said in a statement.
Gabonese oil production peaked in the late 1990s and the country has since fallen from the No. 3 oil producer to the No. 6 position in the region because of field maturation.
As of 2012, the last full year for which data are available, Gabon had 2 billion barrels of proven oil reserves. Oil accounts for 65 percent of government revenue and 75 percent of export revenue, the U.S. Energy Department's Energy Information Administration reports.
No value of the Woodside deal was disclosed and there was no statement on the transaction from Noble Energy.