ExxonMobil Gets Green Light for Ringhorne East Development

The Norwegian Government has approved the plan for development and operation of the 25/8-14 S Ringhorne Øst oil discovery.

ExxonMobil Exploration & Production Norway is operator for the development, and has prepared the plan on behalf of the licensees.

Ringhorne Øst is an oil discovery near Balder in the North Sea, about 160 km west of Karmøy. The discovery was proven in 2003, and the plan calls for development by means of four production wells drilled from the existing Ringhorne platform. If pressure support is necessary, two water injection wells will also be drilled from Ringhorne. The produced volumes will be transferred to the Balder ship for processing. Ringhorne Øst is expected to come on stream in the first half of 2006.

Investments associated with the development of Ringhorne Øst will amount to about one billion NOK. The Ringhorne Øst reservoir contains oil with associated gas. Anticipated recoverable reserves are 7.5 million standard cubic meters of oil and 0.3 billion standard cubic meters of gas. The other licensees are Norsk Hydro Produksjon, Petoro and Statoil.

The Ringhorne Øst development is located in two production licenses. The licensees in production licenses 027 and 169 have entered into a unitization agreement for production of the Ringhorne Øst deposit.

"Ringhorne Øst entails new oil and gas production that will ensure extension of the production plateau in an area on the Norwegian shelf where there have been petroleum activities for many years. This means that Ringhorne Øst can make use of existing infrastructure in the area. In addition, this is a good example of a project with rapid progress from discovery to approved development plan," says Kathy Pepper, Managing Director of ExxonMobil in Norway in a press release from the company.