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Thursday, 6 March 1980
Page: 615

Senator MacGIBBON (QUEENSLAND) - I ask a question of the Minister for National Development and Energy. Has the Minister seen the article in today's Courier-Mail that Esso Australia Ltd is to establish, by June of this year, two oil exploration teams in western Queensland and that these teams, consisting of 200 personnel, will operate for 1½ to 2 years looking for oil in the Winton and Charleville areas? Is Esso's claim that this will be the largest land-based search for oil in Australia's history true?

Senator CARRICK - I have not seen the newspaper today but my understanding is that Esso is undertaking that exploration. There is a very considerable speeding up in the exploration and development programs of Esso. I will seek further information as to the magnitude of the exploration and let the Senate know.

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