Statoil submits plans to fast-track Visund South development in the Norwegian North Sea

Source: Statoil

Norwegian major Statoil (NYSE:STO) reported that the licensees in Visund South submitted a plan for development and operation (PDO) to the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy. Production start-up is scheduled for the third quarter of 2012. 

Visund South, which consists of the Pan and Pandora discoveries, is located 10 kilometers from both Gullfaks C and the Visund A platform, and will be developed with a subsea tieback. 

The installation will consist of a subsea template with four well slots, where three wells will be drilled and tied in to Gullfaks C for processing. 

The total investment for the development amounts to NOK 5.6 billion . Transport and export will take place via Gullfaks C's export system. 

The volumes on Visund South are estimated at approx. 67 million barrels of oil equivalents and the discovery is characterized as medium-sized. The discovery of oil and gas was made in 2008/2009 in 290 meters of water and 2,900 meters below the seabed. 

"Due to the risk of the pressure dropping on Visund South resulting in a potential loss of reserves, a rapid development of the field is necessary", said project manager Hogne Pedersen. 

Visund South is the first in Statoil's portfolio of fast-track developments. In just one year, the project has matured from an opportunity to an investment decision and PDO. 

"Most likely, 2011 will be a breakthrough year for fast-track developments on the Norwegian Shelf. The fact that we have already submitted a PDO for Visund South shows that we are on the right path. There is therefore every reason to congratulate the project team on their efforts", said Executive Vice President Øystein Michelsen.
Developing Visund South 

Visund South is located in the Norwegian North Sea between the Visund and Gullfaks fields. The development incorporates two structures, Pan and Pandoa, which exhibit a reservoir pressure of 340 bar. The development aims to develop 67 mboe (1/3 oil and 2/3 natural gas) over a production life of 15 years. 

Statoil serves as the operator of the project with 53.2 percent interest. Project partners include Total with 7.7 percent, Petoro with 30 percent and ConocoPhillips with 9.1 percent. 

A number of contracts have already been awarded on the development. In April 2010, a pipeline contract was awarded to Sumitomo, and the subsea installations were awarded to FMC in June 2010. Marine operations and modifications on Gullfaks C were awarded to Subsea 7 in the autumn of 2010, and topside modifications on Gullfaks C were awarded to Aibel in December 2010 with start-up slated for summer of 2011. Drilling of the wells will start in the summer of 2011 and be completed in 2012.

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