Paris, 8 December 2009 - Total announces the acquisition of a 25% interest in the Guyane Maritime Permit from Hardman Petroleum France SAS, an affiliate of Tullow Oil plc. The permit, located about 150 kilometres off the coast of the French Guiana, covers an area of approximately 32,000 square kilometers (km2) in water depths ranging from 2,000 to 3,000 metres.
This acquisition, which is subject to approval from the French authorities, complements Total's portfolio in deep water acreage in a new oil exploration region for the Group. In the permit, a 3D seismic acquisition program covering an area of up to 3,000 km2 is already underway.
"With the acquisition of an interest in the Guyane Maritime Permit, Total will be able to bring its expertise in deep water to an exploration program deployed in a French department," stated Yves-Louis Darricarrère, President, Exploration & Production.
Under the new partnership structure, Hardman Petroleum France SAS is operator of the permit with a 39.5% interest. Other partners are Shell Exploration and Production France SAS (33%), Total E&P Guyanne Française (25%) and Northpet Investments Ltd (2.5%).