Statoil Teams Up With Rivals for Arctic Exploration

Statoil Teams Up With Rivals for Arctic ExplorationStatoil Teams Up With Rivals for Arctic Exploration

Norway's Statoil has teamed up with Eni, Lundin Petroleum, OMV and GDF Suez to coordinate exploration activities in the Norwegian Arctic to reduce costs, it said on Tuesday.

The three-year deal, to be led by Statoil, will focus on the Barents Sea, particularly areas to be awarded next year in Norway's 23rd licensing round.

"Our goal is to increase coordination and develop cost-effective solutions for exploration in the Barents Sea in both the short and medium term," Statoil said. "We will collaborate with authorities, industry organizations and other relevant institutions to deliver on this."

Statoil announced delays to exploiting its Johan Castberg discoveries for a second time last year — ahead of the collapse in the price of crude — amid disappointment over exploration drilling aimed at improving the scale and potential profitability of the project. Johan Castberg, previously known as Skrugard and Havis prospects, lies in isolated and technically challenging waters 100km to the north of Statoil’s Snohvit gasfield in the Barents Sea, the first offshore development in the area.