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Swift Energy’s Rimu Production Station Opens

21 June, 2002

Associate Minister of Energy Paul Swain opened Swift Energy’s new Rimu Production Station near Hawera this morning.

Mr Swain welcomed the new plant and the benefits it would have for South Taranaki and the economy as a whole. “The Government is pleased that the Rimu discovery has reached the point where it is producing oil and gas. Not only does it mean that the company is now getting a return from its investment but it also means that there are new permanent jobs here in south Taranaki. And through royalties and taxes the Government will also be getting a return on the investment it has made in encouraging Swift Energy and other companies to come to New Zealand.”

Mr Swain commended Swift for the way it has maintained relationships with a wide range of people and organisations including local government, iwi, industry and government during the time it has been in New Zealand. “This is a people business based around oil, rather than a oil business based around people,” he said.

“Swift has drilled a total of 11 wells and sidetrack wells in New Zealand over the past two and a half years. It has taken interests in other Taranaki permits, has bought the TAWN fields; and built this production station.

“This level of investment by Swift has been a vote of confidence in New Zealand as an exploration destination.”

The Government is working hard to persuade other oil companies to follow Swift Energy’s lead in investing in exploration here and is having considerable success said Mr Swain. “A total of $153 million was spent in 2001 on petroleum exploration activity by some 53 companies in 59 different permit areas.

“This rise in interest has been maintained and is demonstrated by the number and level of bids received for the recent Onshore and Nearshore Taranaki bidding round. With the Maui field now in decline, New Zealand needs to find more gas and more oil. More explorers like Swift Energy and more investment is needed to help meet New Zealand’s future energy needs,” said Mr Swain.

Ends

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