The Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy has offered 83 production licenses on the Norwegian continental shelf) in the Award in Pre-Defined Areas 2018 (APA 2018).
“I am delighted to offer 83 new production licenses in this year’s APA round. This is the largest licensing award on the Norwegian continental shelf. 53 years after the first licensing round, this new record confirms the industry’s belief in continued value creation and activity in Norway,” says Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Kjell-Børge Freiberg.
The 83 production licenses are distributed over the North Sea (37), the Norwegian Sea (32) and the Barents Sea (14). Thirty-three different oil companies, ranging from the large international majors down to smaller domestic exploration companies, are awarded ownership interests in one or more production licenses. 21 of these companies will be offered operatorship. The licenses are awarded with work-programme commitments or as additional area to such licenses.
“Awarding prospective acreage is a central element in the Government’s policy. It enables different oil and gas companies to make the discoveries we need. Today, I have awarded several licenses to medium-sized companies and to new companies on the NCS. The increased diversity of companies is important to ensure employment and Government revenues,” continues Minister Freiberg.
There is great diversity in the player landscape in this APA award, both small companies and large international companies are being offered exploration acreage. Of the 38 companies that applied (this number does not include Petoro), 33 are being offered ownership interests in at least one production licence.
“The number of awards shows that the companies believe that more resources remain to be found in areas with known geology and near existing infrastructure. It is important that these resources are discovered while we still have infrastructure such as platforms and pipelines nearby – then even small discoveries can be developed profitably. One reason why the companies still find it attractive to explore in mature areas could be that large parts of the Shelf are now covered by new and improved seismic data, which together with new technology enable the companies to identify new exploration targets,” says exploration director Torgeir Stordal in the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD).
Offer of licenses to 33 licensees (number of shares/operatorships):
Aker BP (21/11)
AS Norske Shell (4/2)
M Vest (4/0)
Petrolia NOCO (5/1)
Vår Energi (13/4)