Symskaya Exploration Inc., a 50 percent-owned subsidiary of Equity Oil Co., 10 W. 300 South, has started drilling the first exploratory test well in the Krasnoyarsk region of the Russian Federation, the first drilled in the area by an American company.

Paul Dougan, Equity president, said the well will be drilled to 14,500 feet. "We are very excited about finally being able to test the geologic premise of the project which, in our view, could lead to the development of substantial oil and gas production in a previously unexplored area of Russia," he said.The well will be drilled with a Russian drilling rig that has been augmented by Western equipment shipped to the project from the United States. Symaskaya will have a Western drilling supervisor and a Western geologist at the well during the drilling to work with Russian counterparts to ensure a quality well, he said.