OSLO, Norway – Wells drilled offshore Norway last year led to 20 discoveries, according to the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD). This is seven more than in 2012.
Exploration activity was highest in the North Sea where seven oil and gas accumulations were proven. Elsewhere there were eight discoveries in the Norwegian Sea, and five in the Barents Sea.
NPD estimates cumulative resources in the range 50-106 MMcm of oil and 30-58 bcm of recoverable gas.
Last year Norwegian fields produced 213.7 MMcmoe, 4.9% down on the figure for 2012. This year NPD estimates a slight increase to 215 MMcmoe, with production continuing to rise at modest levels over the next decade.
Four Norwegian fields came onstream in 2013, and 13 currently are under development. Operators on the shelf expect to submit another 13 plans for development and operation (PDOs) over the next two years, of which nine could be in the North Sea, three in the Norwegian Sea, and one in the Barents Sea.
Investments should reach NOK176 billion ($28.5 billion) in 2014, NOK3 billion ($487 million) more than the preliminary figure for 2013. Following a further increase in 2015 to around NOK180 billion ($29.2 billion) in 2015, investment should stabilize at around NOK 170 billion/yr ($27.5 billion/yr) up to 2018.
NPD director general Bente Nyland said: “The work to coordinate the resources and improve the recovery rate on the shelf has greatly benefited both the companies and the Norwegian state.
“Concerns over the cost level and oil prices must not prevent us from making decisions that will secure our income base for many years to come.”