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Current trends of exploration and development activity in the world's sedimentary basins reveal a major success in Alaska, important discoveries in South America and the Middle East, and increasing activity in the Canadian Arctic. A large proportion of the newer exploration activity is offshore; operations off the North American coasts are at an early stage; exploration continues at a slower tempo than previously on the shelves of northwestern Europe; and activity around Africa, in the Indonesian region, and around the Australian coast is steady. A major discovery in New Zealand is being followed up, and interest is spreading into the Pacific islands.
Exploration in these widespread areas will continue for many years, but sufficient work already has been completed to indicate that (1) offshore basins are as variable in their potential as those onshore, and (2) offshore exploration provides no automatic guarantee of discovering major reserves.
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