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The April sale of Crown petroleum and natural gas rights has generated $16.4 million in revenue for the province, with the Weyburn area receiving highest sales.

The sale, the second for 2012, brings year-to-date revenue from land sales to just over $45 million.

Energy and Resources Minister Bill Boyd said while the sale was smaller in terms of hectares on offer, it provided additional exploration options for Saskatchewan's oil industry.

"Our land sale revenues have been fairly consistent over the past five sales, averaging $20 million a sale," Boyd said. "This sale continues a trend we've seen of companies concentrating on working their considerable existing dispositions and adding to their land inventories in the recent sales.

"Last year was our second-best for both oil production and oil well drilling, and more than 5,000 oil well licences were issued in 2011. With drilling ahead of last year's pace, 2012 is shaping up to be an excellent year for activity in our oil patch and these new acquisitions by industry will only increase that activity."

April's sale included 173 lease parcels that brought in $16.3 million in bonus bids and one petroleum and natural gas exploration licence that sold for $160,500.

The Weyburn-Estevan area received the most bids with sales of $11.5 million. The Lloydminster area was next at $2.2 million, followed by the Swift Current area at $1.4 million and the Kindersley-Kerrobert area at $1.3 million.

The highest price for a single parcel was $1.6 million. Federated Co-operatives Limited acquired this 259-hectare lease parcel northeast of Carlyle.

The highest price on a per-hectare basis was $12,159. Scott Land & Lease Ltd. bid $196,860 for a 16-hectare lease parcel northwest of Edam.

The next sale of Crown petroleum and natural gas dispositions will be held on June 4, 2012. Oil sands exploratory permits will also be offered in the June sale.

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