Austral Pacific Reports A7 Discovery Well Now Producing

    Austral Pacific announces Cheal A7 Oil Well On-Line

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand, Sept. 1 /CNW/ -- Austral Pacific Energy Ltd.
    Austral Pacific Energy Ltd. is pleased to announce that the Cheal A7 well
commenced production on Saturday, August 30, 2008.
    Austral CEO and President Thompson Jewell said, "I am pleased to see the
well on stream this quickly and performing as expected. The incremental
production and revenue is a welcome sight."
    A7 has now been successfully tied into the Cheal Production Facility
using a temporary connection. The well will be flowed through these temporary
facilities for three months while the permanent installation is being planned.
    As part of the planned production and testing procedures the well is
being produced at 200 barrels of oil per day (bopd) with no water during the
testing phase. There was no observed surface pressure decline measured during
the first test period.
    The initial testing indicates that the well is capable of a maximum flow
rate in the range of 250-280 bopd. The optimum flow rate will be established
over the coming weeks. The field's current production rate is approximately
520 bopd.
    Cheal A3X has been shut-in this week while the A7 well was brought into
production as a result of a reoccurrence of the casing leak encountered
earlier this year. A number of options are being reviewed for immediate
remedial repair to return the A3X well to its 90 bopd rate while planning is
underway to support a permanent repair towards the end of this year if
    A number of short and medium term production enhancement projects are
being investigated and implemented to further improve and maximize the value
of the current Cheal field production. Two additional locations that could add
both reserves and production have been prepared and further prospects on trend
are being prioritized based on the results of the A6 and A7 drilling
    Cheal is a producing oil and gas field south of Stratford in onshore
Taranaki, New Zealand.  It is 69.5% owned by Austral, which is also field
    Austral Pacific is a listed independent oil and gas exploration and
production company registered in Canada with corporate headquarters in
Wellington, New Zealand. The Company has an interest in eight exploration and
production permits totaling over 2.6 million acres in New Zealand. The
Company's primary assets are the Cheal Field, Kahili Field and Cardiff Field
located onshore in the highly prolific Taranaki Basin on the North Island of
New Zealand.

    Web site:
    Phone: Thom Jewell, CEO +64 (4) 495 0880 or Brad Holmes +1 (713) 304 6962
    Neither the TSX-V nor the NZSX have approved or disapproved the contents
hereof. This release includes certain statements that may be deemed to be
"forward-looking statements" within the meaning of applicable legislation.
Other than statements of historical fact, all statements in this release
addressing future production, reserve potential, exploration and development
activities and other contingencies are forward-looking statements. Although
management believes the expectations expressed in such forward-looking
statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not
guarantees of future performance, and actual results or developments may
differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements, due to factors
such as market prices, exploration and development successes, continued
availability of capital and financing, and general economic, market, political
or business conditions. Please see our public filings at and for further information.

For further information:

For further information: Thom Jewell, CEO, +64-(4)-495-0880, or Brad
Holmes, +1-713-304-6962, both of Austral Pacific Energy Ltd., Web Site:

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