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BP said Wednesday it has made a significant oil discovery at its Gila prospect, which it co-owns with ConocoPhillips, in the deepwater US Gulf of Mexico.

This is BP’s third discovery in recent years in the emerging Paleogene trend in the Gulf of Mexico, the company said.

BP has previously announced two other Paleogene discoveries in the Gulf of Mexico – Kaskida in 2006 and Tiber in 2009.

The Gila discovery was made by an exploration well on Keathley Canyon Block 93, about 300 miles southwest of New Orleans, in approximately 4,900 feet of water.

The well, which penetrated multiple Paleogene-aged reservoir sands, was drilled to a total depth of 29,221 feet.

Appraisal drilling, including completion of drilling through the Paleocene section, will be required to determine the size and potential commerciality of the discovery.

“The Gila discovery is a further sign that momentum is returning to BP’s drilling operations and well execution in the Gulf of Mexico,” said Richard Morrison, Regional President of BP’s Gulf of Mexico business.

BP owns a majority interest in the Gila discovery which is located approximately 25 miles west of Tiber, also located in the Keathley Canyon area. The lease for Keathley Canyon Block 93 was acquired in the Western Gulf of Mexico Lease OCS Sale 187 in 2003.