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Talisman joins renewed interest in Quebec assets

Talisman Energy Inc. has confirmed plans to drill three natural gas wells in Quebec later in 2008, as the Calgary-based firm evaluates the potential of its assets in the region. While Quebec doesn't produce oil or gas at present, the province has long been suspected to hold reserves in formations of shale rock along the St. Lawrence River, and interest in those resources has taken off as higher prices and technological advancements make exploration more feasible. Earlier this year, Forest Oil, a Denver-based oil and gas company, said its assets in Quebec may hold as much as four trillion cubic feet of gas, spurring an upsurge of interest in junior companies such as Gastem Inc., Junex Inc. and Questerre Energy Corp., who hold stakes in the region. Questerre is the minority partner with Talisman on the three wells it expects to drill. TLM (TSX) rose 74 cents to $23.94. TLM (NYSE) rose 73 cents (U.S.) to $23.92.

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