Norsk Hydro, Statoil To Drill 4 Wells In Barents 2004/05

Norsk Hydro and partner Statoil are actively seeking a rig to drill four new wells in the Barents Sea, Norsk Hydro Executive Vice President Tore Torvund said Friday.

"The four wells will be very important to understand the potential of the area," Torvund told journalists at an Offshore Northern Seas conference.

He said the joint venture - which also involves Italian oil and gas company ENI SpA with a small share - is expected to begin drilling the four wells this winter.

All four wells will be located on the Norwegian side of the Barents Sea, with one close to the Russia/Norway disputed areas.

Torvund wouldn't provide any further details, including the cost, but added, "It will be expensive."