Friday, May 2, 2008

Papua New Guinea Discovers Natural Gas

May 1 (Bloomberg) -- InterOil Corp., the company developing Papua New Guinea's first liquefied natural gas facility, surged the most in more than eight months after announcing a natural-gas discovery in the country.

InterOil reported finding gas and gas liquids in its Elk-4 well in the Antelope structure in a statement distributed by Marketwire today. The discovery will ``significantly augment'' gas found in a previous well, InterOil said.

InterOil didn't provide details on how much gas it found.

``Drilling operations experienced a gas kick and a flow of gas liquids to surface which was circulated and flared,'' the company said in the statement. InterOil also said it doesn't currently have reserves or resources as defined by Canadian rules of disclosure for oil and gas activities. Anesti Dermedgoglou, InterOil's vice- president for investor and public relations, didn't immediately return a call seeking comment.

The oil and natural-gas explorer had the biggest gain in the Standard & Poor's/TSX Composite Index, rising 18 percent to C$22.34 in Toronto trading, its biggest advance since Aug. 3. The stock had fallen 40 percent in the past year through yesterday, compared with a 4 percent gain for the S&P/TSX index.

InterOil said its assets in Papua New Guinea include exploration licenses that cover about 9 million acres, an oil refinery, as well as retail and distribution facilities.

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