Statoil Spuds Tornerose Prospect in Barents Sea

Statoil has started drilling an appraisal well in the Tornerose prospect in the Barents Sea. Transocean's semisub, Transocean Polar Pioneer, rig commenced drilling on Thursday, August 10th.

The well is being drilled to assess the extent of the petroleum reserves in the prospect.

"This appraisal well is important," says Tim Dodson, senior vice president for exploration in Statoil’s Exploration & Production Norway business area.

"It will enable us to prove gas which can strengthen the basis for a possible expansion of the Hammerfest LNG plant on Melkoya."

Tornerose lies about 55 kilometers east of Snohvit and 125 kilometers northwest of Hammerfest. Water depth in the area is just over 400 meters.

The drilling operations are expected to take about 40 days.

Statoil is operator of Tornerose with a 33.53% holding. The other licensees are Petoro (30%), Total E&P Norge (18.40%), Gaz de France Norge (12%), Amerada Hess Norge (3.26%) and RWE Dea Norge (2.81%).

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