1 Feb 2014

Oil company abandons Taranaki well

6:29 am on 1 February 2014

The country's largest oil producer is leaving the Matuku-1 well in the Taranaki Basin after failing to find oil.

OMV New Zealand, which has been drilling in the basin since 1999, started the well at the end of November.

Though it drilled to a depth of 4846 metres the company said it did not find the commercial quantities of oil it was hoping for.

It said the well has been plugged and the rig will move from the site this weekend.

OMV New Zealand said a vast amount of logging and drilling data gathered will be used to update geological models of the area, to help better predict where hydrocarbons may be trapped.

It said while it is disappointing not to discover a major new oilfield, it's in the nature of oil and gas exploration that well below 50 percent of explorations are a success.