Norway to Enact Regulations on Use of Offshore Infrastructure

The Ministry of Petroleum and Energy has laid down regulations relating to the use of facilities by others in the petroleum sector. The regulations will enter into force on 1 January 2006. The objective is to achieve efficient use of existing platforms and pipelines in order to ensure more exploration for and production of petroleum on the Norwegian continental shelf. This is especially important in the mature areas.

Huge investments have been made in infrastructure on the Norwegian continental shelf. As the continental shelf is maturing, it is vital that platforms and pipelines are utilized in an efficient manner. These regulations will contribute to ensure companies good incentives for further exploration and development, says Mr. Odd Roger Enoksen, Minister of Petroleum and Energy.

The regulations will contribute to a more efficient negotiating process, and establish a framework for the formulation of tariffs and other commercial terms. The regulations do not imply any change in the principle that the companies are the ones responsible for negotiating good commercial solutions for both parties.

A consultation process for the draft regulations was carried out during the autumn of 2005. The Ministry received numerous comments from the industry, covering a broad specter of issues. These comments have given the Ministry a solid foundation for completing the regulations. The main principles from the draft regulations have been kept in the new regulations, but a few adjustments of the text have been made on the basis of the comments received.

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