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Artek Exploration Ltd. Provides Operations Update

CALGARY, ALBERTA -- (Marketwire) -- 12/18/12 -- Artek Exploration Ltd. (TSX:RTK) - Artek Exploration Ltd. ("Artek" or the "Company") is pleased to provide the following operational update.

At Inga, B.C. the Company has successfully drilled and completed its sixth and seventh horizontal wells of a seven 2012 horizontal well program (60% working interest) at A13-33-88-23W6, representing an extension to the southern end of its Doig natural gas and condensate trend, and at A13-3-88-23W6M. The results of the respective 114 and 87 hour well tests were consistent with average test results achieved by the Company at Inga to date as previously disclosed. Immediately following the test periods, the wells were producing from the Doig in-line at an average initial rate per well of approximately 4.5 mmcf/d of natural gas (3.8 mmcf/d sales) and 946 bbl/d of liquids, or a total gross average of 1,579 boe/d sales volumes per well based on field estimates over a 24 hour period. As a result of the two new wells coming on production, the Company is managing individual well production through its facility with some of its older wells temporarily restricted and therefore additional completion or workover activity that could result in additional volumes will be postponed until the new year. Consistent with investment in facilities in parallel with its drilling activity during 2012, Artek will continue to incrementally expand the capacity at its operated facility during the upcoming year as necessary.

At Leduc Woodbend in Alberta, the Company has brought on the 4 (1.6 net) wells from its September/October 2012 development program. Production volumes for the property were averaging between 650 to 690 boe/d (97% crude oil) over the last month, up from approximately 370 to 400 boe/d during the summer and ahead of management's initial expectations. Artek now operates the property and plans to drill additional wells in 2013 and increase water injection into the oil property which has been under waterflood since 2001.

Including the incremental volumes from the above noted operations, Artek averaged over 4,000 boe/d during the second week of December based on field estimates (with some wells currently restricted at its facility at Inga), achieving its previously announced 2012 exit production guidance of 4,000 boe/d. During early December the Company estimates it has averaged between 43% to 45% oil and NGLs of which approximately 87% to 90% is oil and condensate.

The Company is currently planning to provide details of its planned operations and guidance for the 2013 year in late January and is currently scheduled to release its 2012 year-end financial results after close of market on or about March 21, 2013.

ADVISORIES

Forward Looking Statements: This document contains forward-looking statements. Management's assessment of future plans and operations and the timing thereof, future results from operations, production estimates including 2012 exit production, commodity mix, initial production rates, drilling plans, timing of drilling and tie-in of wells, productive capacity of new wells, facility expansion plans, and financial capacity to carry out its future capital program may constitute forward-looking statements under applicable securities laws and necessarily involve risks including, without limitation, risks associated with oil and gas exploration, development, exploitation, production, marketing and transportation, loss of markets, volatility of commodity prices, currency fluctuations, imprecision of reserve estimates, environmental risks, competition from other producers, inability to retain drilling rigs and other services, incorrect assessment of the value of acquisitions, failure to realize the anticipated benefits of acquisitions, the inability to fully realize the benefits of the acquisitions, delays resulting from or inability to obtain required regulatory approvals and ability to access sufficient capital from internal and external sources. As a consequence, the Company's actual results may differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, the forward looking statements. Forward looking statements or information are based on a number of factors and assumptions which have been used to develop such statements and information but which may prove to be incorrect. Although Artek believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements or information are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on forward looking statements because the Company can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct.

In addition to other factors and assumptions which may be identified in this document and other documents filed by the Company, assumptions have been made regarding, among other things: the impact of increasing competition; the general stability of the economic and political environment in which Artek operates; the ability of the Company to obtain qualified staff, equipment and services in a timely and cost efficient manner; drilling results; the ability of the operator of the projects which the Company has an interest in to operate the field in a safe, efficient and effective manner; Artek's ability to obtain financing on acceptable terms; field production rates and decline rates; the ability to replace and expand oil and natural gas reserves through acquisition, development or exploration; the timing and costs of pipeline, storage and facility construction and expansion; the ability of the Company to secure adequate product transportation; future oil and natural gas prices; currency, exchange and interest rates; the regulatory framework regarding royalties, taxes and environmental matters in the jurisdictions in which the Company operates; and Artek's ability to successfully market its oil and natural gas products. Readers are cautioned that the foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. Additional information on these and other factors that could affect the Company's operations and financial results are included in reports on file with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and may be accessed through the SEDAR website (www.sedar.com) or at the Company's website (www.artekexploration.com). Furthermore, the forward looking statements contained in this document are made as at the date of this document and the Company does not undertake any obligation to update publicly or to revise any of the included forward looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as may be required by applicable securities laws.

BOE Conversions: Barrel of oil equivalent ("BOE") amounts may be misleading, particularly if used in isolation. A BOE conversion ratio has been calculated using a conversion rate of six thousand cubic feet of natural gas to one barrel. This conversion ratio of six thousand cubic feet of natural gas to one barrel is based on an energy equivalent conversion method primarily applicable at the burner tip and does not represent a value equivalency at the wellhead. Given that the value ratio based on the current price of crude oil as compared to natural gas is significantly different from the energy equivalency of 6:1, utilizing a conversion ratio on a 6:1 basis may be misleading as an indication of value.

Test results and initial production rates: the pressure transient analysis or well test interpretation has not been carried out and thus test results referred to herein should be considered to be preliminary until such analysis or interpretation has been completed. Test results and initial production rates over short periods as disclosed herein may not necessarily be indicative of long-term performance or of ultimate recovery.

Artek is a crude oil and natural gas exploration, development and production company headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Artek's shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "RTK".

The Toronto Stock Exchange has neither approved nor disapproved of the information contained herein.

Contacts:
Artek Exploration Ltd.
Darryl Metcalfe
President and Chief Executive Officer
(403) 296-4799

Artek Exploration Ltd.
Darcy Anderson
Vice President Finance and Chief Financial Officer
(403) 296-4775

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