The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate revealed Friday that 26 companies have applied for exploration acreage in Norway’s 23rd licensing round.
This round comprises 57 announced blocks or parts of blocks, three of which are in the Norwegian Sea and 54 in the Barents Sea. Thirty four of the announced blocks are situated in a newly opened area in the south-eastern Barents Sea and many of the applicants have targeted this acreage. Applicants in the 23rd licensing round include BP Norge AS, Chevron Norge AS, ConocoPhillips Skandinavia AS and Tullow Oil Norge AS. Yesterday, Statoil also signaled its intent to bolster its asset portfolio on the Norwegian Continental Shelf.
Sissel Eriksen, exploration director at the NPD, commented in an organization statement:
"It is good to see that so many competent companies want to explore in new acreage during a time when we are experiencing low oil prices and substantial cost cuts. This shows that the companies recognise opportunities and the potential of finding oil and gas in these new areas."
The Ministry of Petroleum and Energy plans to award new licences in the 23rd round sometime before summer 2016.
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