Chevron Corp. (CVX) this month acquired rights to explore for natural gas in Poland, the company said Thursday in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Chevron, the second-largest U.S. oil company by market value after Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), said its annual report that the exploration acreage is located in the Grabowiec concession in the southeastern part of the country. The company also said that in December it was awarded three five-year exploration licenses in the adjacent Zwierzyniec, Kransnik and Frampol concessions, to explore for shale gas.

The company didn't disclose the amount of acreage.

Chevron is the latest U.S. major exploring for shale gas in Poland. ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips (COP) and Marathon Oil Corp. (MRO) have also recently acquired significant positions in the country.

The move comes at a time when demand for gas produced in Europe is expected to grow vigorously as countries intensify their efforts to reduce their dependence on Russia as a supplier. Chevron and its rivals are hoping to meet Europe's need for new local supplies by using the same techniques that led to a huge boost in U.S. gas production in recent years.

-By Isabel Ordonez, Dow Jones Newswires, 713-547-9207; isabel.ordonez@dowjones.com

 
 
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