Canadian Occidental Petroleum subsidiary CXY Energy of Dallasagreed to acquire 50% of Fina Oil and Chemical’s interests in 64lease blocks in the Gulf of Mexico.

The acquisition adds about 65,000 net acres to CXY’s acreageinventory and enhances its exploration opportunities in thedeep-water of the Gulf. Thirty-two drilling prospects have beenidentified on the blocks. A number of these prospects are nearrecent discoveries, including the Macaroni discovery, reputed tocontain several hundred million barrels of oil. Twenty-one of theprospects are in depths of less than 4,000 feet, while 11 are indeeper water. One or two locations are expected to be drilled in1998. The majority of the leases pertaining to the blocks have 10years to expire and will qualify for royalty relief.

“We’ve been in the shallow Gulf for almost 15 years and havewatched the development of deep-water exploration with interest,”said Victor Zaleschuk, Canadian Occidental CEO. “We believe itranks among the best exploration opportunities anywhere in theworld at the current time, and we are fortunate to acquire such anattractive position in partnership with some of the most successfuloperators in the region.”

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