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24.11.2009 – 00:50

Bontan Corporation Inc.

Bontan Corporation Obtains Significant Israel Offshore Oil and Gas Concessions

Toronto, November 23 (ots/PRNewswire)

Bontan Corporation Inc.
(Bontan) (OTCBB:BNTNF) is pleased to announce that it has acquired,
through its wholly owned subsidiary, an indirect 71.63% working
interest in two drilling licenses and one exploration permit in the
Levantine Basin, 40 kilometers off the West coast of Israel in the
eastern Mediterranean ("Project Assets"). Petroleum License 347
("Mira") and Petroleum License 348 ("Sarah") cover approximately
198,000 acres (803 sq. kilometers), and Petroleum Preliminary Permit
199 ("Benjamin"), covers approximately 461,000 acres (1,865 sq
Bontan's interest is held by its 75% equity interest in Israel
Petroleum Company, LTD. (IPC). IPC has acquired an undivided 95.5%
working interest in the Project Assets from a private company,
subject to approval of the transfer by the Israeli Ministry of
The consideration paid by Bontan in connection with the
acquisition of its interest in IPC was a cash consideration, 8.6
million common shares and 22.8 million common share warrants. The
warrants have a term of 5 years and are exercisable at US$4 per
share. The private company retained a 3% overriding royalty in the
Project Assets.
Bontan arranged for one-year loans to cover part of the
acquisition cost. The loans accrue interest at 10%, are payable
without penalty at any time, and are secured by a portion of the
shares in IPC. A total of 1.15 million common share warrants have
been issued to the lenders as compensation for the loans. The
warrants have a five year term and are exercisable at US $0.35 per
All shares and warrants issued are restricted from trading until
their resale is registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
About the Project area
The Project Assets are located in the Levantine Basin near the
recent Tamar 1, Tamar 2, and the Dalit natural gas discoveries. The
three wells were drilled by Noble Energy Inc. (NBL.NYSE), who
partnered with Delek Energy Systems (DEOL.TA), Isramco (ISRA.TA), and
Avner Oil and Gas LP (AVNR.TA). The wells have a reported 6.8 TCF
(1.02 BBOE) of estimated proved, probable and possible reserves in
the licensed area, making this the second largest gas discovery in
the world since January 2008. South of the Project Assets is the
existing Mari-B field, also drilled by Noble, Delek, and Avner, which
contains a reported 1 TCF (150 MBOE) of estimated proved, probable
and possible reserves.
The required 3-D seismic for the license area is in the process
of being completed. The required 2-D seismic work for the permit has
been completed and application will be made to convert the permit to
a license.
Management of Project Assets
International Three Crown Petroleum LLC (ITC), managed by Howard
Cooper, owns a 22.5% equity interest in IPC and will operate the
Project Assets. Mr. Cooper has been involved in the international oil
and gas business for thirty years, having successfully developed
projects in the United States, Russia, and Kazakhstan. Mr. Cooper
commented, "Obtaining two licenses and an adjoining permit adjacent
to Noble Energy's estimated 6.8 TCF recent discoveries and north of
the existing Mari-B field is very exciting. Analysts have valued
Noble's 36% interest in their new discoveries at $1.5 billion. We are
very excited about the potential upside to this project."
Kam Shah, CEO of Bontan, commented, "The acquisitions of the Mira
License, Sarah License and the Benjamin Permit, covering over 2,660
square kilometres, provides Bontan with the long awaited opportunity
to participate in the development of Israel's offshore oil and gas
resources. With the 6.8 TCF discoveries north of the Project Assets,
the possibility of significant hydrocarbon deposits on our project
area exists."
About Bontan Corporation Inc.:
Bontan Corporation Inc. is an international diversified natural
resource company that operates and invests in exploration prospects.
Through its wholly owned subsidiaries, Bontan seeks highly
visible opportunities in countries around the globe with a history of
natural resource production that offer exciting and attractive
propositions. Bontan will seek to minimize risk by bringing in either
joint venture, carried or working interest partners, depending on the
size and scale of the project.
There are 48,338,429 shares outstanding and 44,024,478 warrants
and options outstanding as at November 24, 2009, for a total of
92,362,907 shares on a fully diluted basis.
Forward-Looking Statements
This news release may include forward-looking statements within
the meaning of the U.S. federal and Canadian securities laws. Any
such statements reflect Bontan's current views and assumptions about
future events and financial performance. No assurances can be given
that such future events or performance will occur. Important risks
and factors that could cause actual results or events to differ
materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements,
include, without limitation, economic and political developments in
Israel, approval of the transfer of the two licenses and permit to
IPC by the Israeli Petroleum Commissioner, reliance on ITC as well as
third-party consultants and contractors to develop the project, the
ability of Bontan and IPC to raise sufficient capital, the risk that
no hydrocarbons may be found or that 2D and 3D seismic may diminish
the attractiveness of the assets, the volatility in commodity prices
for crude oil and natural gas, the presence or recoverability of
estimated reserves, geological and geophysical analysis and
interpretation, exploration and development risks, drilling and
operating risks, competition, environmental risks, government
regulation or other action, potential disruption from terrorist
activities and warfare in the region or at the project assets,
general economic conditions and other risks set forth from time to
time in Bontan's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission and securities regulators in Canada. Bontan assumes no
obligation and expressly disclaims any duty to update the information
contained herein.
For further information: contact the company's investor
relations, John Robinson at Current Capital Corp. at +1-416-860-0211,


For further information: contact the company's investor relations,
John Robinson at Current Capital Corp. at +1-416-860-0211