SOURCE: TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd.

February 17, 2010 08:00 ET

TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. Provides Operations Update and Announces Conference Call

HAMILTON, BERMUDA--(Marketwire - February 17, 2010) - TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. (TSX: TNP) (NYSE Amex: TAT) is pleased to provide an operations update and announce a conference call to report and discuss developments pertaining to the Company's accelerated growth plan, which was announced in November 2009.

Operations Update
Selmo Oil Field
The Company commenced its in-fill drilling program in the third quarter of 2009 and recently spud its sixth in-fill well (S-52) in the Selmo oil field. The Company's fifth in-fill well (S-51) is scheduled to be completed in early March. The Company's fourth in-fill well (S-58) will be placed on production later this week, and two sidetrack wells (S-44 and S-45) will be placed on production in the next week to ten days. In total, the Company plans to drill at least 18 in-fill wells at Selmo this year.

The Selmo oil field's average daily production was 1,715 barrels of oil per day for the first half of February 2010, compared to an average daily production of 1,534 barrels of oil per day in the fourth quarter of 2009. "Selmo production should top 2,000 barrels per day once the fourth in-fill well (S-58) and two sidetrack wells (S-44 and S-45) are placed online," said Malone Mitchell, the Company's Chairman.

Over the past ninety days, the Company has successfully re-worked a number of high water cut wells to reduce the overall water cut in the field. The Company has also stimulated the upper producing intervals with acid in a number of wells. As a result, water production has decreased by over 50% and oil production has increased from the treated wells. "We are seeing positive results from our efforts. Successfully reducing the water cut in the field reduces our overall operating expenses. The results from our acid stimulation jobs are also very encouraging. It is now clear that we can make very good completions in the MSD and upper LSL formations, with a very low water cut," said Mr. Mitchell. 

In the second quarter of 2010, the Company expects the arrival of its own acid stimulation equipment in Selmo and the addition of a fourth pulling unit. "Our own acidizing equipment will allow us to pump higher rate jobs, which should further enhance the productivity of the field. The additional pulling unit will also enable us to complete our newly drilled wells more quickly," Mr. Mitchell concluded.

Thrace Basin
In the Thrace Basin, the Company is very near completion of the gathering system and facilities necessary to begin selling natural gas from its discoveries in the Edirne gas field. Weather has been the principal factor in the delay of project. Heavy rains and snows have made roads in the field impassable for extended periods of time and interfered with construction over the past 90 days. The facilities are now largely complete, with the gating item being tying the system into the Botas pipeline. As soon as ground conditions permit, the Company will complete the interconnection. Once the lines are connected, gas sales should commence within a week to 10 days. While the timeline is largely dependent upon the weather, the Company now expects to commence gas sales by early March. "Getting the system on line is critically important to us. We are confident that we are very near that point. We are also confident that once we get production on line, we will build on that production throughout the year," Mr. Mitchell said.

In mid-January, the Company resumed drilling at Edirne and recently spud its third well (Yolboyu-1) of the current drilling campaign of five to seven wells. The Yolboyu-1 is a 6,500 foot exploratory well targeting deeper gas potential to the south of the existing 3D seismic survey. The first (Kumluk-1) and second (Kartal-1) wells have been logged and cased, with logs indicating expected net pay. These wells will be completed as a group with the other wells the Company is drilling in the current campaign. 

On the western portion of the Edirne license the Company acquired an additional 81 square kilometers of 3D seismic and has begun to evaluate that data. "We expect our recent seismic shoot to result in the identification of a number of additional high quality prospects similar to the prospects from the initial 3D survey, where we have drilled with a 100% success rate," Mr. Mitchell said. 

Paleozoic Trend in Southeast Turkey
In the Arpatepe area (the Paleozoic Trend) in southeastern Turkey, the Company has interests in three wells being drilled or re-entered to test the Hazro and Bedinan sandstones and the Dadas shale. On the Arpatepe license, the Arpatepe-3 well spudded in late December and is drilling ahead. This week, the Company re-entered a wellbore on License 4174 (the Goksu-1) and plans to deepen it to test the Hazro, Bedinan, and Dadas. Also on the Arpatepe license, a recompletion of the Arpatepe-1 well is planned for later this month, which is expected to result in increased production. "Although historically there have been very few wells that have tested Paleozoic-aged formations in Turkey, those wells lead us to conclude that fields can be economically developed over a broad area. I believe the Company is situated ideally to take advantage of the Paleozoic Trend," Mr. Mitchell said.

Turkey Exploration
In addition to the activity at Selmo, the Thrace Basin and the Paleozoic Trend, the Company also plans a number of exploratory wells on other licenses. In the second quarter, the Company plans to spud a well on License 4175 in southeast Turkey to test a large structure consistent with the Kerberan surface anticline, which is anticipated to contain both Cretaceous and Paleozoic-aged formations. In addition to that well, the Company plans to drill at least four exploration wells on other licenses in 2010.

Morocco Exploration
On the Ouezzane-Tissa permits, the HKE-1 exploratory well has encountered gas shows and an intermediate casing string has been run prior to the resumption of drilling. The OZW-1 well has been plugged and abandoned at a total depth of 2,738 meters after encountering an extremely high pressure water zone near total depth which could not be drilled through. The Company plans to drill an alternative location on the Ouezzane-Tissa permits later in 2010, although the location will not be an offset to the OZW-1 well. 

The BTK-1 exploratory well on the Tselfat permit (oil trend) will spud once the weather permits completion of the location and the rig move. "The BTK-1 will be the first prospect targeting an undrilled reservoir that we drill from the leads generated by our 3D seismic covering the oil trend. We also look forward to drilling an exploratory well on the Asilah permit, where we have identified a number of prospects as a result of our 2D seismic survey," said Mr. Mitchell. The Company expects to drill the exploratory well on the Asilah permit this summer.

Romania
The Company has drilled six of its seven planned wells in Romania and commenced drilling the seventh well earlier this week. The Izvoru Beta and Delta wells have been plugged and abandoned after encountering hydrocarbon shows in a number of intervals but failing to flow at commercial rates. The Vanatori and Marsa wells also encountered prospective intervals with hydrocarbon shows. The Vanatori well will be completed in the near future, while the Company further evaluates the Marsa well. 

In the Sud Craiova License, the Company has completed drilling the NG-2 well and is preparing to test two prospective intervals that had hydrocarbon shows while drilling. The NG-4 well has been plugged and abandoned after encountering gas shows in a number of intervals that failed to flow at commercial flow rates. The remaining well in our program, the NG-1, was spud earlier this week.

Reserves at December 31, 2009
The Company is having its reserves evaluated by DeGolyer and MacNaughton as of December 31, 2009 in compliance with National Instrument 51-101 ("NI 51-101") and the Canadian Oil and Gas Evaluators Handbook ("COGEH"). A preliminary report evaluating the Company's net proved, probable and possible reserves from the Selmo oil field, Edirne (Thrace) gas field, and Arpatepe oil field has been provided to the Company. The preliminary report indicates proved reserves of 11.7 MMboe, probable reserves of 23.9 MMboe, and possible reserves of 38.4 MMboe. Net to the Company's interest, and after royalty, this represents an increase of approximately 15%, 64%, and 100%, respectively, compared to the Company's evaluated proved, probable, and possible reserves at December 31, 2008. The Company expects to receive the final report by the end of the month. 

Update Call
The Company will host a conference call to discuss this release on Monday, February 22, at 8:30 a.m. Eastern, 7:30 a.m. Central. To access the call, please contact the conference call operator at (877) 878-2762 or (678) 809-1005 for international calls, approximately 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time, and ask for the TransAtlantic conference call. The pass code is 57718760. A replay will be available until 12:00 p.m. Eastern on March 22, 2010. To access the conference call or conference call materials via the Internet, please visit the Company's website at http://www.transatlanticpetroleum.com. To access the conference call and replay, click on "Investors," select "Events," and click on "Link" found below the event listing.

About TransAtlantic
TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. is a vertically integrated, international energy company engaged in the acquisition, development, exploration, and production of crude oil and natural gas. The Company holds interests in developed and undeveloped oil and gas properties in Turkey, Morocco, Romania, and California.

Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains statements regarding the future drilling, testing, completion and production of oil and natural gas wells, the acquisition and interpretation of seismic data, the acquisition of oil field equipment, the construction of a natural gas gathering system, the timing for such drilling, testing, completion and production of oil and natural gas wells, acquisition and interpretation of seismic data, acquisition of equipment, construction of a natural gas gathering system, as well as other expectations, plans, goals, objectives, assumptions or information about future events, conditions, results of operations or performance that may constitute forward-looking statements or information under applicable securities legislation. Such forward-looking statements or information are based on a number of assumptions which may prove to be incorrect. In addition to other assumptions identified in this news release, assumptions have been made regarding, among other things, the ability of the Company to continue to develop and exploit attractive foreign initiatives.

Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements or information are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements because the Company can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Forward-looking statements or information are based on current expectations, estimates and projections that involve a number of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by the Company and described in the forward-looking statements or information. These risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to the continuing ability of the Company to operate effectively internationally, reliance on current oil and gas laws, rules and regulations, volatility of oil and gas prices, fluctuations in currency and interest rates, imprecision of resource estimates, the results of exploration, development and drilling, imprecision in estimates of future production capacity, changes in environmental and other regulations or the interpretation of such regulations, the ability to obtain necessary regulatory approvals, weather and general economic and business conditions. If one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize (or the consequences of such a development changes), or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual outcomes may vary materially from those forecasted or expected.

The forward-looking statements or information contained in this news release are made as of the date hereof and the Company undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements or information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless so required by applicable securities laws.

Notes Regarding Reserves Data and Other Oil and Gas Information
NI 51-101 imposes oil and gas disclosure standards for Canadian public companies engaged in oil and gas activities. The Company has provided the reserves data and other oil and gas information included in this news release in accordance with NI 51-101 and COGEH and this information may differ from the corresponding information prepared in accordance with U.S. disclosure requirements. The reserves data and other oil and gas information included in this news release may not be comparable to other reserves information reported by the Company or other companies under U.S. oil and gas reserves disclosure requirements.

Possible reserves are those additional reserves that are less certain to be recovered than probable reserves. There is a 10% probability that the quantities actually recovered will equal or exceed the sum of proved plus probable plus possible reserves.

BOEs may be misleading, particularly if used in isolation. A BOE conversion ratio of 6 Mcf: 1 bbl is based on an energy equivalency conversion method primarily applicable at the burner tip and does not represent a value equivalency at the wellhead.

(NO STOCK EXCHANGE, SECURITIES COMMISSION OR OTHER REGULATORY AUTHORITY HAS APPROVED OR DISAPPROVED THE INFORMATION CONTAINED HEREIN.)

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Matt McCann
    CEO
    Scott C. Larsen
    President
    Phone: (214) 220-4323
    Internet:http://www.transatlanticpetroleum.com
    Address: 5910 N. Central Expressway
    Suite 1755
    Dallas, Texas 75206