McMoRan Exploration Co. and Halliburton Company (HAL)
have announced the formation of a strategic alliance to conduct operations for McMoRan's recently announced major new oil and gas exploration and development program in the Gulf of Mexico. McMoRan has recently acquired 160 blocks covering approximately 750,000 gross acres in the Gulf of Mexico with
exploratory rights and the foundation for an aggressive exploration and development program.
Chase Securities Inc. assisted McMoRan in forming this alliance, and will arrange a $50 million bank facility for McMoRan's use in funding the exploration program. Additionally, Halliburton will have the opportunity to participate in McMoRan's development opportunities in this program by providing a portion of the development financing. The alliance agreement, which is subject to certain conditions, extends through June 30, 2003.