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Statoil to Invest $7B in U.K. Mariner Heavy Oil Field

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Statoil to Invest $7B in U.K. Mariner Heavy Oil Field

OSLO - Norwegian oil company Statoil ASA said Friday it is to invest more than $7 billion to develop the U.K. North Sea Mariner field using pioneering technology to extract the heavy oil at what it said is the largest U.K. offshore development in more than a decade.

It is estimated that the field will produce for 30 years from 2017 and production will reach a output plateau of around 55,000 barrels a day in the 2017-2020 period, the company said.

The project will generate 700 full-time and long-term jobs in the Aberdeen area, 200 onshore and 500 offshore, with recruitment starting in early 2013, it said.

Statoil expected the reserves to be more than 250 million barrels of oil. The Mariner field yields heavy oil with an API gravity of around 12 to 14, which requires pioneering technology to extract, the company said.

The company also said it expects to make a final investment decision on the U.K. Bressay heavy oil field in 2013.

Statoil is the operator for Mariner with a 65.11% stake. The field is co-owned by Cairn Energy PLC subsidiary Alba Resources Ltd. with a 6% stake, and JX Nippon Exploration and Production (U.K.) Ltd. with a 28.89% stake.

Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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