Late in 2010 Sterling became owner and operator of the shallow horizons (early Cretaceous and Jurassic Period formations) in licences F14, F16 (excluding the F16-E and F16-P production units), F17a, F18 and L1b in the Dutch North Sea. Sterling concurrently established an operating presence in The Hague and relocated a senior manager to the new offi ce to oversee operations. These licences bring a gross 479,000 acres under Sterling's ownership. The Company will hold an 83.33 percent working interest preceding back-in by the state-owned Energie Beheer Nederland B.V. (EBN), or a 50 percent interest following back-in.
The blocks contain four Jurassic oil discoveries with Company interest (P50) Contingent Resources of 15.8 MMbbls on an unrisked basis. Previous wells have tested at fl ow rates between 2,000 bopd and 4,000 bopd from the principal reservoir when they were tested during appraisal drilling. The wells were all subsequently plugged and abandoned. Sterling is planning to drill a well in 2011 on the largest of the four discoveries. The blocks also off er additional exploration potential with Company Interest Best Estimate Prospective Resources of 26.1 MMBOE on an unrisked basis attributed by Sterling's independent reserves evaluators as at December 31, 2010. With this new country entry, Sterling hopes to grow a successful business leading to production within a short time-frame.