Norway Sees Extensive Interest in APA 2006

Ministry of Petroleum and Energy

At the deadline for application to the Awards in Predefined Areas (APA) 2006 on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy has received applications from 43 companies. The Ministry aims to award new production licenses in APA 2006 in December 2006.

I am pleased to note the extensive interest for acerage in the mature areas of the NCS, and that a total of 43 companies have applied. Even though most of these areas have been available for exploration for several years, the industry sees good opportunities in the APA areas. This shows that the NCS is competitive, says Mr. Odd Roger Enoksen, Norwegian Minister of Petroleum and Energy.

The range of applicants is wide, from the large established international companies on the NCS, to new companies which have been through the prequalification process since 2000.

- A total of 14 new companies have been prequalified so far this year, and several are at present under assessment. Many of these companies participate in the APA 2006 to quickly establish a business position at the NCS. We regard this as very positive, says Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Mr. Odd Roger Enoksen. I will at the same time underline that it is very important that large, established companies that have activities on the shelf, are active in exploration in mature areas, says Minister Enoksen.

Over the last years a high number of Production licenses have been awarded.

Historically, there have never been more Production licenses or more available exploration acreage on the NCS than today. In total there are 294 active Production licenses on the Norwegian shelf. 42 licensees and 27 operators are active on the shelf today. Together with the big interest for APA 2006, this is a good basis for future activity on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, the minister concludes.

The companies that have submitted applications are the following:

Aker Exploration AS, Altinex Oil AS, BG Norge AS, Bridge Energy AS, Centrica Resources Norge AS, ConocoPhillips Skandinavia AS, Det Norske Oljeselskap AS, Discover Petroleum AS, DONG Norge AS, Edison Spa, Endeavour Energy Norge AS, Ener Petroleum ASA, Eni Norge AS, E. ON Ruhrgas Norge AS, Esso Norge AS, Faroe Petroleum Norge AS, Gaz de France Norge AS, Genesis Petroleum Corp Plc, Idemitsu Petroleum Norge AS, Hess Norge AS, Lundin Norway AS, Maersk Oil Norway AS, Marathon Petroleum Norge AS, Nexen Exploration Norge AS, Noble Energy Europe Ltd., Norsk Hydro Produksjon a.s, Norwegian Energy Company AS (NORECO), OMV Norge AS, PA Resources Norway AS, Pertra AS, Petro-Canada Norge AS, Petrofac Norge AS, Premier Oil Norge AS, Revus Energy AS, Rocksource ASA, RWE Dea Norge AS, Serica Energy UK Ltd, Statoil ASA, Svenska Petroleum Exploration Norge AS, Talisman Energy Norge AS, Total E&P Norge AS, VNG Norge AS og Wintershall Norge AS.

The Government announced the APA 2006 on February 21, 2006. Background:

  • In 2003 the Government introduced the system of Awards in Predefined Areas (APA) in mature parts of the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS). This system replaced the annual North Sea Awards. Today the predefined areas comprises of acreage in the North Sea, the Norwegian Sea and the Barents Sea.
  • The APA-system ensures that very large areas close to existing and planned infrastructure are available for the industry in the years to come. This will contribute to efficient use of production and transportation installations on the NCS.
  • The APA-system gives new and smaller players on the NCS opportunities to build up their exploration portfolio.
  • The APA area shall be expanded as new areas mature, but the area shall not be reduced.

Announced blocks or parts of blocks in the APA-rounds:

2003 – 143 blocks
2004 – 151 blocks
2005 – 192 blocks
2006 – 200 blocks

Number of companies that submitted applications:

2003 – 16 companies
2004 – 22 companies
2005 – 29 companies
2006 – 43 companies