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Friday, August 26, 2011

Gulfsands Makes Oil Discovery in Syria

- Gulfsands Makes Oil Discovery in Syria

Friday, August 26, 2011
Gulfsands Petroleum plc

Gulfsands provided this update on operations in Syria.

Block 26 Drilling Operations

Yousefieh East Exploration Well (Yous-6)

The Yousefieh East exploration well ("Yous-6") has been drilled using the Crosco-E401 rig to test an undrilled structural high in Cretaceous age carbonates located approximately 3 kilometers to the east of the Yousefieh field discovery well (note, this well was erroneously referred to as Yousefieh-8 in a Gulfsands Petroleum plc News Release dated July 11th 2011). The Yous-6 well was deviated at an angle of up to 36 degrees to the vertical in order to avoid obstructions to drilling operations on the surface directly above the target location.

The Yous-6 well encountered oil bearing Cretaceous Massive Formation reservoir at a depth of 2045 meters Measured Depth Below Rotary Table ("m MDBRT") or 1560 meters True Vertical Depth Sub-Sea ("m TVDSS"), 28 meters deep to prognosis. The well penetrated the hydrocarbon bearing Massive reservoir section at an angle of approximately 29 degrees to the vertical. Two twelve meter core sections, parts of which were oil stained, were recovered from the wellbore over the interval 2055-2079m MDBRT (1569-1590m TVDSS). Interpretation of wireline logs indicates a gross porous reservoir interval of 18.1 meters was encountered overlying a non-porous interval, and having a net oil column of 12.8 meters, average porosity of 18% and average oil saturation of 69%.

Pressure data obtained via wireline logs indicates that the oil bearing reservoir is slightly depleted versus initial reservoir conditions, indicating that the Yousefieh East structure is likely to represent an eastern flank extension of the Yousefieh field which is currently on production at approximately 2,600 barrels of oil per day ("bopd"). Reservoir permeability in the Yous-6 net reservoir section is interpreted to be of similar quality to that encountered in the main producing areas of the Yousefieh field.

The Yous-6 well was production tested and produced at an average oil flow rate of approximately 250 bopd of 20 degree API oil for 4 hours on 2 inch choke under nitrogen assisted lift conditions with no water production. The well will be tested further following acidization of the reservoir in a rig-less operation.

Due to a thinner oil column encountered in this well versus other Yousefieh wells, the Yous-6 well will require the installation of permanent artificial lift facilities in order to flow continuously. The Yous-6 well is located within the Yousefieh field Development License Area and can be quickly tied back and produced into the existing Yousefieh field production facilities once artificial lift facilities are secured. Procurement of the relevant equipment is in progress.

The impact of Yous-6 on Yousefieh reserves will be evaluated as part of the year-end reserves review.

Safa-1 Exploration Well

Operations have been completed on the Safa-1 exploration well which was drilled using the Crosco M-501 rig. This well targeted a fault-bound dip closed structure of Cretaceous aged reservoir on trend and approximately 7 kilometers north of the Khurbet East Field.

The Safa-1 well is interpreted to have encountered the Cretaceous Shiranish Formation at 1937m MDBRT (1448m TVDSS) and the Cretaceous Massive Formation at 1953m MDBRT (1464m TVDSS). Three consecutive core sections were cut between 1942m and 1975m MDBRT (1453m and 1486m TVDSS), with a total recovery of 31.4 meters of core, sections of which were stained with viscous oil. Evaluation of wireline logs indicates a net reservoir interval of 9.9 meters with an average porosity of 13% and an average oil saturation of 74%.

Well testing operations were conducted in open hole over sections of the gross reservoir column in three stages, however only formation water of low salinity plus traces of viscous oil were recovered to surface, even after an acidification of the net reservoir interval was performed.

The Safa-1 exploration well therefore has been plugged and abandoned as a non-commercial heavy oil discovery.

Forward Drilling Program

Gulfsands drilling operations in Syria Block 26, using the Crosco E-401 and M-501 drilling rigs, will continue as planned with the drilling of one development and one exploration well.

The Khurbet East-20 well is planned as a delineation well to further evaluate the northern flank of the Khurbet East field. The Wardieh-1 exploration well will target a new exploration play, a combined structural/ stratigraphic trap located on the southern flank of the Souedieh Field at the Cretaceous "Massive" level.

Block 26 Oil Production

Production operations on Block 26 continue without interruption. Combined gross oil production from the Khurbet East and Yousefieh fields has averaged in excess of 24,000 bopd to date during the month of August following commissioning of an additional Khurbet East sub-station facility on August 6, 2011.

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