Hydro Starts Production at Fram East

Oil and gas production from Fram East in the Troll area has started. At peak production, this new field will contribute to a 50,000 barrel-per-day increase in oil production from the Hydro-operated Troll C platform.

Production from the first well started on schedule on October 30.

Fram East is the second field development to have commenced production in the promising area north of the Troll Field. Total development costs for infrastructure for production and transport at Fram East amount to NOK 2.4 billion.

"At peak production in 2008, Fram East will contribute to a significant increase daily production at Troll C. This contributes to significantly increased revenue from Hydro's operations in the Troll area," says head of the Troll business unit in Hydro, Ivar Aasheim.

"Fram East is the latest addition to Hydro's production portfolio in this area. We are planning to submit a development plan for the Vega development in the same area later this year and are currently drilling an appraisal well on the Astero discovery made last year."

The Fram East field, which consists of several geological structures, was discovered in 1990 and contains 61 million barrels of recoverable oil and 3.1 billion cubic meters of recoverable gas.

Fram East has been developed with two subsea production templates with a total of eight drilling slots connected to the Troll C platform where oil and gas are processed and transported. The field is now producing from the first production well that was drilled by the rig Bideford Dolphin. In the near future, the rig will return to Fram to drill new wells for production and water injection. A total of five production wells and two water injection wells are planned at Fram East.

Produced water from Troll C will be used as pressure support in the Fram East reservoir. This contributes to significant positive environmental gains through reductions in emissions to the sea in the Troll field. Fram East has also been developed to enable it to utilize gas from Fram West via Troll C as gas injection to increase recovery rates from the wells. Fram East is the first underwater field in Hydro's operations portfolio to employ the gas lift injection method.

PL 090 Fram owners are Hydro as operator with 25%; ExxonMobil with 25%; Statoil with 20%; Idemitsu with 15%; and Gaz de France with 15%.

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