Northern Petroleum Seeks to Boost Dutch Production

Northern Petroleum is planning to drill a new well in the Netherlands this winter as the company seeks to boost production at its Dutch fields.

In its half-year results announced Monday, Northern Petroleum said that work had continued to evaluate reservoir production performances in the Netherlands and that it was analyzing reprocessed 3D and 2D seismic to determine future drilling targets.

The Geesbrug-2 well has been designed and is in a pre-drill phase after the company subjected its Ottoland field to an oil production test program. The firm is also planning a Geesbrug-3 well.

In Italy, Northern Petroleum said its efforts are mainly being directed towards realizing the "high potential" of its position in the Southern Adriatic. A 2D seismic survey of very good quality was recorded in late 2011, said the firm, and data has been interpreted to give a clear definition of the Cygnus prospect with an estimated mean resource estimate of 484 million barrels.

Elsewhere in Italy, the company said it relinquished its licenses in Po Valley after its La Tosca well proved unsuccessful.

Meanwhile, at the firm's Shell-operated Guyane prospect the first of four permitted wells is currently drilling and a 3D seismic program is in progress.

In a research note oil sector analysts at London-based investment bank finnCap on Monday said Northern Petroleum's success in boosting production in its Dutch fields were still at a "wait and see" stage, but they described the firm's Southern Adriatic project as "potentially very interesting".

Analysts at Fox Davies Capital said that they were particularly interested in the drilling results on the exploration well on the "world-class" Zaedyus discovery on the Guyane Maritime permit, where an estimated one billion barrels of recoverable oil is thought to lie.

Northern Petroleum reported that its revenue fell to $11.1 million (EUR 8.7 million) during the six months to June 30, from $16.6 million (EUR 13 million) in 1H 2011, while its first-half profit improved to $500,000 (EUR 391,000) compared to just $52,000 (EUR 41,000) in 1H 2011. Production during the period fell to 189,000 barrels of oil equivalent from 331,000 in 1H 2011. 

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