Tasmania has a similar geological make-up to oil-rich Arab lands.
GAS giant Santos is looking to Tasmania for part of a $185 million oil and gas exploration project. This project consists of exploration of an area of 18,260sq km in depths of up to 1500m off the North-West Coast and south of Portland in Victoria.
Santos is going to head a joint venture in one of the biggest petroleum-exploration programs in southern Australia. It has joined US oil company Unocal on one project, while Japan's largest upstream oil company, Inpex, has joined it on the other.
Tasmanian government welcomed petroleum-exploration project as a move with a potential for investment in servicing and supporting the project, and any downstream development.