Shell Says Makes Potential Gas Find in Norwegian Sea

Royal Dutch/Shell (RD) has found "indications of hydrocarbons" at its President gas prospect in the Norwegian Sea, the company said Wednesday, but declined to give details.

Although a drilling program on the prospect two years ago disappointed many expecting a significant find, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate said in July that this year's drilling program, "is expected to yield considerable results."

Industry sources said if a find has been made, it could be linked to Shell's Draugen oil and gas field, southeast of the prospect.

Although spokesman Svein Ildgruben said there were three to four weeks left in the drilling operations, a source close to the drilling said the company should be able to tell the significant of the find within in about a week.

The source also said although it was too early to say the significance of the hydrocarbon find, "it is positive."

As operator, the company owns a 30% stake in the block, Partners include state-owned Petoro with 30%, Statoil ASA (STO) with 20% and Total (TOT) with 20%.

ODJ Select -- By Ian Talley Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES