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Mobil Corp. Says 25 Percent of Commercial Discovery off Vietnam

April 19, 1994

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) _ Mobil Corp. estimates it has a 25 percent chance of making a profitable oil discovery this year off the southern coast of Vietnam, a company executive said Tuesday.

At the signing of Mobil’s exploration contract with the Vietnamese government, J. Robert Gaca, Mobil vice president for new business development, said the company plans to begin drilling its first exploratory well in August and expects to know the results by November.

″What our experts tell us is this is a 25 percent chance″ of finding enough oil to cover costs, he said. ″That’s good.″

But Gaca added: ″It’s still a wildcat. There have been no wells drilled, no one knows for sure what’s there.″

Western Geophysical will start a new seismic survey of the area Wednesday, he said.

Mobil struck oil in 1974 off the coast of what was then South Vietnam. It pulled out after the U.S.-backed Saigon government fell to North Vietnamese Communist troops in April 1975 and the American embassy was evacuated.

President Clinton lifted the 19-year U.S. economic embargo against Vietnam on Feb. 3.

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